El Faro

We discuss the week's top news stories with our roundtable of local journalists: Andrew Pantazi, Florida Times-Union reporter; Fred Matthews, Examiner blogger; and Matt Shaw, Folio Weekly editor.

Topics include Mayor Lenny Curry asking for all members of the JEA board to resign, the first lawsuit against the company that owned the missing cargo ship El Faro, and more.


Ryan Benk / WJCT News

The shipping company that owned and operated the ill-fated El Faro cargo ship is being sued by one of the crew member’s families.

Jacksonville attorney Willie Gary is alleging TOTE Services is responsible for the deaths of 33 crew members aboard the vessel.

But some legal experts are questioning Gary’s motives.


We discuss the week's biggest news stories with our roundtable of local journalists: Andrew Pantazi, Florida Times-Union reporter; Claire Goforth, Folio Weekly writer; Tim Gibbons, Jacksonville Business Journal editor; A.G. Gancarski, Florida Politics writer.

Topics include the investigation into the missing cargo ship El Faro, concerns about public housing in Jacksonville, and more.

Ryan Benk / WJCT News

Florida Senator Bill Nelson may propose reforms to maritime law to address safety concerns after the sinking of the El Faro cargo ship.

Nelson was in Jacksonville Friday to tour a similar ship owned by the same company as the El Faro.

The Jacksonville community came together Thursday night to show support for the families and friends of the crew aboard the ill-fated El Faro.

A couple-hundred people attended the prayer vigil which was held in a large, empty field across the street from JAXPORT headquarters on Talleyrand Avenue.

The cargo ship was on its way from Jacksonville to San Juan, Puerto Rico last Thursday when it fell victim to Hurricane Joaquin, a Category 4 storm with 50 foot waves, 140 mph winds and zero visibility. All of the El Faro's 33 crew members are believed to have drowned.

The U.S. Coast Guard is calling off its search for survivors from the cargo ship El Faro at sunset Thursday.

The El Faro was on its way from Jacksonville to Puerto Rico last week when it lost power near the eye of Hurricane Joaquin, a Category 4 storm with 40 to 50 foot waves and 140 mph winds.

All 33 crew members on board the container ship are now believed to have drowned.

Searchers will continue to look for the ship and for the voyage data recorder which contains a record of the 12 hours prior to the ship’s sinking.

Cyd Hoskinson / WJCT News

The federal investigation into the sinking of the San Juan, Puerto Rico-based cargo ship El Faro kicks into high gear today. The El Faro was a roll-on/roll-off ship that delivered cargo to and from San Juan and Jacksonville.

The El Faro was on its way to Puerto Rico last week when it crossed paths with Hurricane Joaquin and disappeared along with its 33 crew members.   

National Transportation Safety Board investigators arrived in Jacksonville Tuesday to begin looking into the accident.

Michelle Corum / WJCT News

The U.S. Coast Guard is continuing to search for survivors of the sunken cargo ship El Faro. The captain reported a mechanical failure shortly before the ship drifted into the path of Hurricane Joaquin last week. Searchers have spotted an empty life boat and other floatation devices, along with at least one human body believed to be a crew member.

On Tuesday, family and friends of the El Faro crew were gathering in Jacksonville to await the latest news.

hall exterior
Michelle Corum / WJCT News

Coast Guard crews are continuing to search for possible survivors from the cargo ship El Faro, which is believed to have sunk during Hurricane Joaquin near the Bahamas. The ship left from Jacksonville last Tuesday and the search began Friday.

One of the 33 crew members aboard was Shawn Rivera. His great-uncle, Barry Young, was with other crew members’ families near the Seafarers International Union hall Monday  afternoon.

He says he’s praying for his great-nephew to come home.

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