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The company operating a cruise liner that capsized after crashing into rocks off the Tuscan coast has said errors made by the ship's captain may have caused the disaster that left six dead and more than a dozen still missing.

Costa Crociere said "preliminary indications" suggested Captain Francesco Schettino may have been guilty of "significant human error" which resulted in the Costa Concordia running aground, sparking a frantic evacuation operation.

Rose Metcalf, 23, from Wimborne in Dorset, wiped away tears as she revealed she had written a note to her mother in case she did not survive.

She was one of the last people to be rescued by a helicopter after she clambered from Deck Four to Deck Five.

She worked as a dancer on the ship.

"There was just so much panic so I decided to wait until the water was high enough so I could jump or swim, but I didn't want to be inside," she said.

"I was just keeping practical. I was making sure the people on my life raft had their jackets done up.

"I was trying to keep people talking, was trying to keep the mood calm and keep practical.

"My heart was racing, but I was calm to everyone else."

Rose MetcalfMiss Metcalf said she used her watch to time how quickly the water was creeping up the side of the ship, and estimating what degree the vessel was lying in the sea.

"We had already judged where we were going to swim to on the shore,'' she said.

"Thank God we were near the shore."

She turned to her mother and said: "I had written you a note."