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Costa Concordia Disaster: Passengers Plan Class Action Suit

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As the search of the capsized Costa Concordia is suspended, passengers from across the world are planning a class action lawsuit against the cruise line.

The ship, which was carrying 4,200 passengers, ran aground on Friday off the coast of Italy. So far 11 bodies have been recovered; 29 people are still missing.

Consumer rights organization Codacons told the Herald Sun, "Over 70 passengers who were on board the ship have joined the class action suit initiated by our association. Our objective is to get each passenger at least 10,000 euros compensation for material damage and also for ... the fear suffered, the holidays ruined and the serious risks endured," he said.

Similarly, a French couple named Patrice and Tatiana Vecchi are collecting signatures to join their suit against the tour operator for "failure to help people in danger, putting in danger the lives of others, involuntary homicide and lack of security information," their lawyer, Frederic Casanova, told the GMA Network. Patrice Vecchi told the site, "The emergency procedure was launched too late. It was completely confusing. It is not normal that several among us were unable to find any life jackets while the crew was equipped. And once we were off the ship, Costa completely disappeared. We saved ourselves."

While it may be too early to tell how much the disaster will cost the industry, analysts have estimated that claims could total around $500 million.

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