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23 May, 2021 12:52

14 dead after cable car plunges in Italian Alps, children among injured passengers

14 dead after cable car plunges in Italian Alps, children among injured passengers

A major incident in northern Italy has left at least 14 people dead after a cable snapped, sending a cable car falling near a mountain peak. Two injured children were airlifted to Turin.

The incident happened on Sunday in the Italian Alps on the cableway line which connects the commune of Stresa near Lake Maggiore with the top of Mount Mottarone.

A car fell near a pylon in one of the highest points of the cableway close to the summit. The disaster occurred due to a cable failure, preliminary reports indicate.

The cable car fell from a “relatively high point,” an alpine rescue service spokesman, Walter Milan, told Italy’s Rai News broadcaster, adding that it appears to be “completely crumpled” and almost “destroyed,” indicating that the impact “was obviously significant.”

CNSAS, the Italian alpine rescue service, confirmed that 13 people were killed in the crash, adding that this figure could “unfortunately” rise even further. They also said two air ambulances were among the vehicles dispatched to the site of the incident. They airlifted two children who were injured after the fall to a hospital in Turin.

The death toll from the cable car crash reached 14 late on Sunday, as one of the two children transported to a hospital in Turin succumbed to the injuries they had sustained in the incident, Italy's alpine rescue service said.

Italy’s Infrastructure Minister Enrico Giovannini called the incident a “truly terrible tragedy” and said that he already contacted local authorities and the rescue services.

The place where the tragedy happened is a popular tourist destination during both summer and winter. The cableway started operating in the 1960s and underwent an upgrade several years ago, restarting after a pause in 2016. The cable car can accommodate up to 40 passengers.

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