At least 9 people have died and two were seriously injured after a cable car connecting Italy’s Lake Maggiore to a mountain nearby in the north of the country fell on Sunday, the national alpine rescue service said.
The Stresa-Mottarone cable car takes tourists and locals from the famous city of Stresa on Lake Maggiore at almost 400 meters above sea level to the summit of the Mottarone Mountain in 20 minutes.
“It’s a very serious accident,” Walter Milan, a spokesman for the national alpine rescue service, told RaiNews24 television.
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He said two children were taken to a children’s hospital in the northern city of Turin by helicopter.
The rescue call came shortly after noon and the cable car had fallen from very high and was now sitting “crumpled” in the forest below, added Milan.
The Italian news wire ANSA said the cable car had carried 11 people before the accident. The two children who were transported by ambulance were said to be 9 and 5 years old.
The accident was caused by a cable failure in the highest part of the route, which was over a hard-to-reach forest area, which made rescue efforts difficult, the agency reported
The elevator had only recently reopened after the coronavirus restrictions were gradually lifted.