GPS to be fitted in Venice’s gondolas after tourist killed in crash with water taxi
Venice authorities will fit GPS devices and number plates on all the lagoon city’s gondolas to monitor their movements and prevent a repeat of the accident that cost the life of a German tourist in August.
The measures are part of a 26-point plan drawn up by a senior transport official to improve safety in the city’s increasingly crowded waterways. The area around the Rialto Bridge, where Joachim Vogel, 50, was killed when the gondola in which he was travelling hit a water taxi, is a particular cause for concern, according to the transport councillor, Ugo Bergamo, who presented his action plan at the weekend.
In addition to monitoring all vessels with GPS devices, Mr Bergamo intends to stop gondolas lining up in rows to serenade tourists and to remove jetties that protrude too far into canals. He also wants to slash levels of traffic, including motor boats, in clogged areas, such as the Rialto Bridge.
“We have no alternative,” he said. “We can’t pretend that we don’t have a problem. We intend to reduce the water traffic in crucial parts of the Grand Canal by 50 per cent.”
When the measures kick in on 4 November, 5,000 vessels will require GPS devices. The city’s gondolas will subsequently have to have them as well. Water taxis also face new restrictions. Forty surveillance cameras placed over the Grand Canal between the railway station and St Mark’s Square will be on the lookout for offenders.
But there may be other changes on the way, too. Blood and urine tests performed on the gondolier, Stefano Pizzaggia, involved in the August accident reportedly suggested he was under the influence of cocaine and cannabis at the time.
Emergency services carried out a simulated rescue operation on Monday, to test the response to a collision between vessels further from the shore.
International Women's Day 2014: The shocking statistics that show why it is still so important
Malaysia Airlines: Search for true identity of passengers with stolen passports launched as terrorism concern grows
Singapore sting: Sky-high prices are pushing locals to the edge of affordability
International Women’s Day: 'When a man gives his opinion, he's a man. When a woman gives her opinion, she's a bitch' - feminist quotes from female icons to inspire you
Dead woman's body found sitting in a car after six years after direct debits ran $54,000 bank account dry
Britain's top vet sparks controversy with call for ban on slashing animals' throats in 'ritual' slaughters for halal and kosher meat products
Ukraine crisis: Russia dismisses '3am ultimatum' as 'total nonsense'
If you're horrified by a flame-roasted dog, you should be shocked at a hog roast
Poor 'live like animals' says Boris's privately educated sister after going on 'poverty safari'
White people become less racist just by moving to more diverse areas, study finds
Exclusive: Impact of immigrants on British workers ‘negligible’
- 1 International Women's Day 2014: The shocking statistics that show why it is still so important
- 2 Orgasm machine to deliver climax at the push of a button
- 3 Dear 'The Sun', breast cancer isn't sexy
- 4 Singapore sting: Sky-high prices are pushing locals to the edge of affordability
- 5 Liam Neeson turned down James Bond role because late wife Natasha Richardson said she wouldn't marry him if he took it
£12000 per annum: Inspiring Interns: A small but growing chain of boutique hot...
£12000 per annum: Inspiring Interns: The company works with Tier 1 FTSE 100 Ba...
£45 - 60k Per Annum: Charter Selection: Highly profitable leisure brand, marke...
£30000 - £50000 per annum + Highly Competitive Salary: Austen Lloyd: Residenti...