Going Down With The Ship?
That ferry sinking offshore of South Korea is the second time in recent memory we've heard of a captain allegedly jumping ship and leaving the crew and passengers to fend for themselves. The other recent incident being that ship off Italy that ran into a reef and the captain was allegedly one of the first into the life boats.
Kinda burns you up, doesn't it? Hey, even if the captain yells, "FOLLOW ME!", as he leads the charge to the lifeboats he's at least showing some leadership. Apparently these last two didn't even seem to do that.
CNN takes a look at some of the ethics and laws involved. We'd like to think ship's Captains have passenger safety as their primary duty. If they don't, they should get some sort of punishment. As I read the CNN article it's more a matter of how different countries handle it.
A few years ago I was watching one of the home video shows on TV. They had one of a small cruise ship that was chartered by a scuba diving club. The ship got into some trouble in rough seas. The club members thought something might be wrong so at least one of them went to the bridge to check on the situation.
The bridge was deserted. They look out the see the captain and crew in a lifeboat saving their own skins with no word of warning to everyone else on board. They basically deserted the ship.
The passengers made out ok. The video shows them in their scuba gear sliding down a rope to a nearby reef where they pretty much just floated around until rescued. The narrator of the video said nothing could be done about the captain and crew that abandoned the passengers. They'd apparently broken no law.
I don't recall what flag that ship sailed under, but nobody should be able to get away with that. At the very least, along with a lot of public humiliation, the captain should never be allowed any position in the command of a ship again. I don't have a problem with countries that would give prison time for such behavior, either.