Fourteen people, including five Israelis, were killed in a cable car crash near Verbania in the Piedmont region of northern Italy on Sunday.
Italian authorities say a cable car crashed into the ground about 65 feet high near the northern city of Verbania on Sunday, killing 14 people, including a nine-year-old child. The dead included five Israelis, including a couple, while their five-year-old child was fighting a life-and-death battle.
The accident happened in the tourist town, Stresa, on the shores of Lake Maguire in the Piedmont region, Italian officials said. The death toll from the crash is expected to rise. The accident happened while the occupants of the cable car were looking at the top of the mountain.
He added that two seriously injured children were admitted to the hospital where one died.
President Sergio Materella and Prime Minister Mario Draghi have expressed “deep regret” over the accident and offered condolences to the victims. Regional as well as EU leaders have also expressed grief over the accident.
In a tweet, European Council President Charles Michel expressed his condolences to the families and friends of those killed in the crash.
The Italian Ministry of Infrastructure said in a statement that the accident happened around 12:30 pm when 15 people were riding in a cable car with a maximum seating capacity of 35 people. The cable car was about 100 meters from the top of the mountain at the time of the accident.
The ministry has ordered an investigation into the crash. He says the accident was probably caused by a weak wire near the top.
The mayor of Stresa, Marcella Severino, said the car rolled backwards and hit a pole.
This 20-minute cable car journey is very popular among tourists. It connects Stresa to the top of Mount Mottarone, which offers a beautiful view of the whole area.
Italian officials said some of the victims were trapped inside the car after the crash, while others fell to the ground from a height.
This mountainous area is quite sloping so rescue and relief workers had great difficulty in reaching the victims.
Walter Milan, a spokesman for the Alpine Rescue Service, said: “The cable car crashed into a dense forest below a relatively high altitude. The car was almost completely destroyed when it fell to the ground. It was a big accident. ”
The cable line was re-laid at the tourist site in 2016 and reopened last month after being closed due to a coronavirus lockdown.
Cable car accidents in the past
There have been several such cable car accidents in Europe over the past 50 years.
On September 5, 2005, nine Germans were killed when an 800-kilogram concrete slab cable fell from a helicopter onto the Austrian resort of Treville.
In February 1998, a low-altitude U.S. military plane crashed into a wire in Cavaliers, Italy, killing 20 people aboard the cable car. In Cavaliers alone, a cable car crash in 1976 killed 42 people.