Canadas TSB to interview Brazilian search officials in probe of ship sinking

The Canadian Press ~ The News
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The Transportation Safety Board will interview Brazilian search and rescue officials in an effort to find out why a Nova Scotia-based sailing training vessel sank, and why it took so long for those aboard to be rescued.
Investigators will also examine the stability of the Concordia.
Those are two of three key areas the investigation is currently honing in on, said Ken Potter, the board's manger of marine investigations.
"At this point we've concluded most of our investigation and we're beginning to do our analysis," he said Friday.
That includes studying the search and rescue efforts carried out by both Canadian and Brazilian authorities. "We expect to interview Brazilian search and rescue officials."
The Concordia sank in a matter of minutes last February, 500 kilometres off the coast of Brazil.
All 64 crew and students made it safely into life-rafts, however, it is believed the Brazilian navy did not issue a distress call until about 20 hours after the ship capsized, activating its emergency beacon.
The investigation also includes an analysis of the stability of the vessel, which the board is conducting through documents provided by the ship's owner, West Island College, as well as with Lloyd's Register Group's classification information and advice provided by naval architects.
The board is also calling upon Environment Canada climatologists to provide their expertise.
It is believed the ship was sunk by a rarely-occurring microburst, an intense blast of downward air that was reportedly in excess of 120 km/h.
"Following the analysis, we will write a draft report which will go to the designated reviewers," said Potter.
He said they include the people and agencies who were interviewed as part of the investigation, such as West Island College and regulator Transport Canada.
They have 30 days to respond to the report and then the board draws up its final report.
Potter was unable to say how long that could take.

Organizations: West Island College, Transportation Safety Board, Register Group Environment Canada Transport Canada

Geographic location: Brazil

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