More remains have been found at the site of the Costa Concordia wreck off the Tuscan island of Giglio, the head of Italy’s civil protection agency said on Wednesday.
It’s the second find after bones were recovered on the seabed last week by divers searching for two lost victims of the cruise ship disaster.
“Both sets of remains have undergone DNA tests. Before jumping to easy conclusions, we must wait for the results,” Gabrielli said, according to the Italian news agency ANSA.
The Concordia had 4,229 people from 70 countries on board when Capt. Francesco Schettino allegedly drove it on an unauthorized route too close to shore, ripping a huge gash in the hull.
As the ship tumbled onto its side on Jan. 13, 2012, it claimed 32 lives. Among them, two bodies — Italian passenger Maria Grazia Tricarichi and Indian crew member Russel Rebello — have been missing.
The findings come after the Concordia was pulled upright last month in an unprecedented salvage operation.
The righting of the 114,000-ton ship will make it possible to access areas of the vessel that were previously off limits.
“In the next days, the inspection of the seabed will be over and the wreck’s interiors will be examined,” Gabrielli said.
Although the search for the remains of the two missing victims is a priority, salvage officials also plan to recover various items from the 951-foot-long ship.
They plan to retrieve valuable statues as well as the cabins’ safety deposit boxes, the contents of which will finally be returned to their owners.
Image: Searching the Costa Concordia wreck. Credit: Rossella Lorenzi