NEW: The incident occurred during dinnertime, a witness says
15 are injured when the ship runs aground
Evacuation efforts were complicated by the position of the listing ship
Some people fell into the frigid water during rescue
At least six people were killed and 15 injured Friday night after a cruise ship ran aground near the Italian island of Giglio, Italy’s ANSA news agency reported early Saturday.
The Costa Concordia, owned by Genoa-based Costa Cruises, ran aground on a sand bank just off the island, located off of Italy’s western coast, ANSA reported. The incident occurred during dinnertime, witness Luciano Castro told ANSA.
The ship was carrying around 3,200 passengers and 1,000 crew members at the time, according to the cruise line’s blog.
Evacuation efforts were apparently complicated by the position of the listing ship, according to Costa’s blog post. Some passengers fell into the frigid waters during rescue, the news agency reported.
As many as 300 people were still on the ship early Saturday waiting to be evacuated, ANSA reported, citing rescuers’ estimates.
“The company is working with the utmost care to give maximum support,” Costa said in the blog statement.
The Concordia, built in 2006, was on a Mediterranean cruise from Rome with stops in Savona, Marseille, Barcelona, Palma de Mallorca, Cagliari and Palermo.
Most of the passengers on board were Italian. CNN affiliate America Noticias, in Peru, said a group of 32 Peruvians were also onboard. Brazil’s state-run Agencia Brasil said 53 Brazilians were on the cruise ship. An estimated 126 Americans were also on board, according to the U.S. State Department. There were no reports of injured Americans though the U.S. Embassy in Rome said it was unable to account for all U.S. citizens believed to be on board the ship at the time of the accident.
Another Costa ship was involved in a deadly 2010 accident when the Costa Europa crashed into a pier in Egypt’s Sharm el-Sheikh during stormy weather, killing three crew members.
CNN’s Marilia Brocchetto contributed to this report.