A little over a month ago, the MSC Opera cruise ship smashed into a dock and another smaller, cruise ship which was disembarking tourists in Venice.

Videos of the huge, out-of-control cruise ship, smashing into the dock and knocking tourists from the little ship in front of it into the water, looked like an attack-of-the-aliens science fiction movie.  But this was no low budget movie. It was exactly what many local Venetians predicted would happen given the presence of huge cruise ships sailing in the Giudecca canal next to the ancient city of Venice.

This weekend, a well forecasted storm struck Venice. As predicted by the weather services, the storm brought with it high winds and heavy rain (as well as hail) to Venice.  Despite the wind and rain, the Costa Deliziosa tried to leave port, with several tugs at its bow and stern. The Costa ship lost control as it headed into the curve of the Giudecca canal. The Costa ship was filmed narrowly avoiding crashing into Venice.

The dramatic video clip below shows the tug billowing smoke as it strains to pull the bow of the Costa Deliziosa away from the Riva dei Sette Martiri (by the Giardini where the Biennale is happening). The Deliziosa‘s siren can be heard blasting.

AIS data shows how close the Costa Deliziosa came to the the Riva dei Sette Martiri.

Costa Cruises defended itself on social media, arguing that the storm was sudden, unexpected and stronger than the forecast. Of course, all cruise lines which choose to sail into rough weather in order to stay on their schedules set by their corporate masters, make this same argument when the rough seas injure and/or terrorize their guests. Costa sent out a series of tweets via @Costa_Press (since deleted) which , the publisher of the Dream of Venice @DreamOfVenice book series, had the foresight to save:

These tweets by Costa were, in essence, all after-the-fact lies as the videos above demonstrate. Dozens of people on Twitter belittled Costa’s amateurish efforts at PR spin which just showed how little credibility the cruise line has in times of crisis.

It is long past time for Venice to establish a ban on these increasingly huge cruise ships cruising in the Giudecca Canal.

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Image credits: No Grandi Navi poster – @Vero_Bergoglio on Twitter; video – Repubblica.