Action is needed on an alternative passage for cruise ships into Venice to allow big vessels to be re-routed from the city’s central canal.

The cruise lines’ trade body Clia made the call following MSC Cruises’ ship MSC Opera colliding with a Uniworld river boat while trying to dock at the San Basilio terminal on Sunday.

Clia is urging all parties in Venice to reach a conclusion to start preparation work to dredge the Vittoria Emmanuelle Canal to begin to re-route larger ships.

Cruise line members of the association welcomed statements by the mayor of Venice demanding an urgent solution that would allow vessels to enter Venice cruise terminal via an alternative route to the Giudecca Canal where the accident occured.

Lines “recognise his views are supported by many locally in the region, and in national government”.

Discussions about using the Vittoria Emmanuelle Canal as a solution have been going on for a “considerable time”.

A recommendation was made last year from the Comitatone inter-ministerial committee for planning, monitoring and safeguarding the Venice Lagoon following years of simulations and studies.

Clia chairman Adam Goldstein (Royal Caribbean) said: “The cruise industry has worked diligently with the mayor of Venice, the Veneto Region, the port authority and many others, to find viable solutions to allow larger cruise ships to access the Marittima berths without transiting the Giudecca Canal.

“We are in agreement with the solution developed by Comitatone in 2018 to utilise the Vittorio Emanuele Canal as the best and most prudent means to move larger cruise ships away from the Giudecca.

Clia cruise lines welcome and will support the urgent implementation of this solution.”