Following a gondola accident, calls arise for Venice motorboats reform

After four Spanish tourists were dunked in Venice on Wednesday, when a wave caused by a large motorboat overturned their gondola, gondoliers have called for changes to be made to the city’s waterways.

Despite the fact that the foursome was quickly rescued by
nearby gondolas, the incident has highlighted the tension between gondoliers and other boaters in the waters surrounding the Italian city.

The flat-bottomed boats might be synonymous with the magic of Venice but they don’t have the best water-handling abilities, being particularly vulnerable to the wash from passing
motorboats.

“The problem remains the movement of the swell caused
by motorboats,” the head of a gondoliers association Aldo Reato told Italian news agency ANSA,
adding that he has been complaining about the problem for two years.

“There are solutions,” he insisted.

Reato
explained that most incidents happen near the jetties where gondola
passengers board, and that extending the boarding decks further out into
the water could help protect the gondolas from any turbulence.

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