Reports have surfaced that a drunken superyacht crewmember jumped off Venice’s Rialto Bridge and landed on a passing water taxi, and is in hospital. The crewmember, at 49 or 50 years old (media reports are conflicting at this stage), is said to be from New Zealand and to have been in the area due to a yacht he was working on being moored in Venice.
The crewmember reportedly dived off the bridge, despite a ban on swimming in the canals, landed on the water taxi and smashed the windshield, injuring the driver of the water taxi, who was taken to hospital and treated for fractures and severe trauma. An Italian online newspaper has said the crewmember in question is in the hospital’s intensive care unit.
Just last week, a superyacht captain voiced his concerns to The Crew Report about the pressure on superyacht crew to spend their largely disposable income on drink and drugs, and the dangerous repercussions that are so often seen – and so often left unseen. The question remains as to where the responsibility lies in ensuring crews remain professional. Once news is out surrounding the superyacht on which this crewmember works, no doubt many media outlets will shout this from the rooftops, naming and shaming the crewmember and, consequently, the yacht. And with this media frenzy, so often the real problem at hand isn’t even addressed – why is this a recurring problem for our industry? And who is taking the responsibility – for their crew and the wider industry – to ensure the number of these types of incidents reduces?
Look out for The Crew Report's feature on crew negligence and safety in issue 79 of The Crew Report, out mid-September and available at the Monaco Yacht Show.