BROADCAST DATE : Feb 3, 2012

The Wreck of the Costa Concordia

The sight of a giant cruise ship, capsized and half-submerged off a rocky Italian shoreline is destined to be one of the enduring images of this new century. 

the fifth estate's Bob McKeown brings the inside story of disaster and death, from the scene of the tragedy.

Featuring previously unseen video combined with the first-hand accounts of Canadian survivors and the rescuers who helped them, the fifth estate presents an incredibly dramatic minute-by-minute reconstruction of The Wreck of the Costa Concordia. There's the local politician who rushed aboard and stayed to the very last -- even as other crew members departed in droves around him. Then there's the ship's doctor, who had had growing misgivings about the captain -- he treated the injured and witnessed the panic and confusion as people scrambled for safety. There are also survivors' stories never told before, and sobering interviews with two sea captains who question the handling of the crisis from the beginning.

In the wake of the disaster, urgent questions remain: just how viable are the massive cruise ships which ply the world's oceans carrying thousands and thousands of passengers? And are the safety and evacuation standards adequate -- or, more to the point, are they even achievable, given modern day passenger loads?