A diver has died after working to prepare the shipwrecked cruise liner for a salvage operation
A diver who was working on the wreck of Costa Concordia has died after reportedly gashing his leg on a metal sheet underwater.
The diver, who has not yet been named, was helping to prepare the shipwrecked vessel for a salvage operation due to take place later this year.
Tuscany’s La Nazione newspaper reported that the diver, believed to be from Spain, had been working on preparations to fix huge tanks to the side of the cruise liner so that it can eventually be towed away and dismantled.
The newspaper said the diver was unable to free himself following the incident and was bleeding heavily.
A colleague was eventually able to bring him to the surface, where he was reportedly conscious, but the man later died.
The diver is the first to have lost his life during the Costa Concordia salvage operation.
The head of the civil protection agency, Franco Gabrielli, paid tribute to the team of people working on the operation.
He said: “They have worked for two years without a break, in difficult conditions not without risks, to achieve the common goal of removing the Concordia from Giglio.”
Hundreds recently gathered on Giglio’s coastline to mark the second-anniversary of the ship’s sinking, which saw 32 passengers and crew killed.
Costa Concordia captain Francesco Schettino is currently on trial for manslaughter and abandoning ship.