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A Little Bit About the Andrea Doria

What happened to the Andrea Doria?
On July 25, 1956, while sailing off the coast of Nantucket, Massachusetts bound for New York City, the Andrea Doria collided with the eastward-bound SS Stockholm of the Swedish-American Line in what was to become one of history's most famous maritime disasters

What was the significance of the Andrea Doria?
The SS Andrea Doria was an ocean liner for the Italian Line with a gross tonnage of 29,100 and a capacity of about 1,200 passengers and 500 crew. For a country attempting to rebuild its economy and reputation after World War II, the Andrea Doria was an icon of Italian national pride. Of all Italy's ships at the time, Andrea Doria was the largest, fastest and supposedly safest.

What happened after the Andrea Doria was struck by the SS Stockholm?
After being struck in the side, the list of the mortally wounded ship left half of Andrea Doria's lifeboats unusable, which might have resulted in significant loss of life, but improvements in communications and rapid responses by other ships averted a disaster similar in scale to the Titanic disaster of 1912. On the Andrea Doria 1660 people were rescued and 46 people died. The evacuated luxury liner capsized and sank the following morning.

Why is the Andrea Doria disaster so well known?
The incident and the aftermath were heavily covered by the news media. While the rescue efforts were both successful and commendable, the cause of the collision and the capsizing and sinking of the Andrea Doria afterward generated much interest in the media, and many lawsuits. The Andrea Doria was the last major transatlantic passenger vessel to sink before airplanes became the preferred method of travel.

What is the Andrea Doria's legacy?
There were several months of hearings in New York City in the aftermath of the collision. Both shipping lines contributed to a settlement fund for the victims. For the Swedish-American Line, damages were estimated at $2 million, half for repairs to Stockholm's bow, and half for lost business during repairs. The Italian Line sustained a loss of Andrea Doria's full value, estimated to be $30 million. The Andrea Doria-Stockholm collision led to several rule changes in the immediate years following the incident to avoid a recurrence. Shipping lines were required to improve training on the use of radar equipment. Also, approaching ships were required to make radio contact with one another.

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