The first 30 minutes to an hour after a disastrous accident is called the "Golden Time."
It is the period of time in which crucial decisions must be made in order to ensure a better chance of survival for those in peril.
As more information comes out about the ill-fated Sewol-ho ferry and the events directly after its accident, the more it seems that those in charge, that those responsible for making sure everyone onboard were safe, were derelict in their duties.
The message says, "please contact the maritime police, the ship is in danger and it is listing."
It was made at 8:55 a.m. Wednesday, from the now-sunken ferry.
It was the first, and the only call for help.
Three minutes later, the police report an official distress situation of the ferry, and two minutes after that,. at 9 a.m an announcement tells passengers to stay where they are inside the ferry.
Half an hour later, a hundred or so naval and civilian ships descend on the ferry's location to help with the unfolding crisis.
The first rescue helicopter arrives at the scene at around 9:40 a.m. and the rescue team is dispatched, but passengers in the Sewol-ho ferry were told to stay put inside their cabins.
At 10:25 a.m. the passenger ferry has listed over 90 degrees, and within an hour, it has completely capsized.
In the critical time directly after the ferry encountered trouble, the captain and crew hesitated to deploy lifeboats.
If they had stayed onboard to save those they were responsible for, this might very well be a different story today, a story of survival instead of monumental tragedy.
Kim Sung-hyun, Arirang News.