London: The captain of luxury cruise ship Costa Concordia that ran aground off the Italian coast last week has admitted that he made a navigational mistake, slamming the cruise liner onto the rocks.
According to a leaked interrogation transcript, Captain Francesco Schettino told investigators that he had ‘ordered the turn too late’ as the luxury ship sailed close to Giglio Island, the BBC reports.
“I was navigating by sight because I knew the depths well and I had done this manoeuvre three or four times,” Schettino reportedly said.
“But this time, I ordered the turn too late and, I ended up in water that was too shallow. I don`t know why it happened,” he added.
According to the leaked transcript quoted by Italian media, Schettino said the route of the Costa Concordia on the first day of its Mediterranean cruise had been decided as it left the Port of Civitavecchia, near Rome, on Friday.
The captain reportedly told investigators that he had decided to sail close to Giglio to salute a former captain who had a home on the Tuscan island.
Meanwhile, Schettino is under house arrest on suspicion of multiple manslaughter.
Prosecutors have also accused him of fleeing the ship before evacuation was complete.
The Costa Concordia ran aground with about 4,200 people on board on Friday night. Eleven people have been confirmed dead so far, and 21 are missing.