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Cable car falls on Italian mountain, killing at least nine people

Cable Car Alert

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Nine people have died and two children are in hospital after a cable car plunged to the ground near Lake Maggiore in northern Italy.

The capsule fell from its cable near the summit of the Mottarone mountain with 11 people on board, Italy’s mountain rescue service said.

Two children, believed to be aged five and nine, have been taken by air ambulance to hospital in Turin, the service added.

Italian newspaper Corriere della Sera said rescue efforts have been made more difficult by the fact that the cabin, which has a capacity of 40, fell into a wood in an inaccessible area.

A photo of the wreckage taken by Italy’s fire brigade showed the crushed remains of the cable car in a clearing of a heavily wooded area near the peak.

The cables were particularly high off the ground at that point, said Walter Milan, spokesman for the Alpine rescue service.

He said the cable line was closed in 2014 for a €4.4 million renovation before opening again in 2016, and had only reopened on 24 April after COVID lockdowns forced the closure of ski lifts across Italy last year.

Fire crews, helicopters, police and mountain rescue teams are on site.

A fire engine driving to the site overturned but there were no injuries.

“A terrible tragedy, I have already spoken with the prefect and the director of the Fire Brigade and Civil Protection. We are trying to understand what has happened, but it is a truly terrible tragedy”, said the Minister of Sustainable Infrastructure and Mobility, Enrico Giovannini.

The cable car links Stresa on the shores of Lake Maggiore to the summit of Mottarone, at about 1,491 metres (4,900ft) altitude, and takes about 20 minutes with a stop in the middle.

In 2001, 40 tourists had to be rescued after a capsule got stuck just after leaving the terminal in Stresa.

here is a small amusement park at the summit, Alpyland, which has a children’s rollercoaster with 360 degree views of the picturesque lake and surrounding Alps in Italy’s Piedmont region.

Many Italian ski areas have mountain bike and hiking trails that are popular in spring and summer.

Courtesy of Sky News

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60 Tourists Trapped For The Night In Mont Blanc Cable Cars

Each cable car has four passengers, and they were travelling at an altitude of 3,800m
Each cable car has four passengers and travels at an altitude of about 3,800m. File pic 
Sixty tourists are stuck on cable cars over Mont Blanc and will not be rescued until morning because of darkness and poor weather.
 
A total of 110 people had become trapped as they rode the Vallee Blanche Cable Car in the Alps at about 4pm on Thursday afternoon.
 
Rescuers only managed to evacuate 50 of them by helicopter before clouds began to hinder their efforts.
 
The attraction rises to an altitude of 3,778m (12,395ft) and offers close-up views of Western Europe’s tallest mountains, as well as the steep glaciers and valleys found below.
 
The regional Le Dauphine newspaper reports that the rescue operation has been suspended for safety reasons – however, those still trapped have been given water, food and survival blankets.
 
Rescuers are also going to stay inside the cabins to reassure affected holidaymakers throughout the night.
 
Each cabin carries four passengers, and the 5km ride is normally meant to take 30 to 35 minutes.
 
Mathieu Dechavanne, the chief executive of the company that operates the attraction, said the cabins became stuck after overhead cables crossed over for “unknown reasons”.
 
However, local television stations have reported that the cables had become tangled in high winds.
 
The Vallee Blanche Cable Car connects the renowned Aiguille du Midi mountain in the Mont Blanc with the Pointe Helbronner.
Courtesy of Sky News