(ANSA) - Venice, August 23 - A gondolier was under the
influence of drugs when his boat crashed and killed a tourist,
Venice police said Friday.
Test results showed traces of cocaine and hashish in blood
tests performed on Stefano Pizzaggia, at the helm when his
gondola collided with a water bus in the Grand Canal, killing
50-year-old Jaochim Vogel from Germany, on August 17.
The force of the crash near the Rialto Bridge threw the
mother, father, three children and the gondolier into the water,
sending their three-year-old to the hospital.
Last month the gondoliers' association announced possible
drug and alcohol testing after a series of complaints.
The move was said to come in response to a video posted to
YouTube of a group of gondoliers allegedly hazing an aspiring
assistant by forcing him to strip off his clothes and swim in a
canal off St Mark's Square in order to get the job.
Drugs or alcohol were suspected to have been involved.
The gondolier in the fatal crash may face involuntary