Mottarone cable car crash: Italy investigates cause of accident

Italy cable car

Сable Сar Falls in Italy’s Northern Piedmont, Killing at Least Nine -photo

Transport and Infrastructure Minister Enrico Giovannini visited the area on Monday and said the government would also set up a commission to look into Italy's worst cable vehicle disaster since 1998, when 20 people died after a low-flying US warplane accidentally cut through a supporting cable.

Authorities said that 15 people were on the cable auto at the time of the crash, including two kids. The child died after several attempts to restart his heart failed and "there was nothing more we could do", said hospital spokesman Pier Paolo Berra.

Barbara and Yitzhak Cohen of Tel Aviv, who were killed on May 23, 2022, when a cable vehicle collapsed near the summit of the Stresa-Mottarone line in the Piedmont region, northern Italy. The two children were in a serious condition and were taken to a Turin hospital.

Late a year ago, further inspections were performed on the cables themselves, including magnetic inspections on the primary cables of the lift: the cable that pulls the cabin up the mountain, the support cable that holds the vehicle and the rescue cables. She said the cabin reeled back down the line until it apparently hit a pylon and then plummeted to the ground.

Stresa Mayor Marcella Severino said it appeared that a cable broke, sending the vehicle careening until it hit a pylon and then fell to the ground on Sunday (Monday NZT).

"It is a very serious accident".

The ill-fated cable auto started running again a month ago after a long break due to the pandemic, the cableway's website says.

Europe has seen a number of similar cable auto accidents over the past 50 years.

Italian Prime Minister Mario Draghi described the crash as a "tragic accident" and said he was receiving updates from local and national officials.

"The police are at the scene of the incident and are trying to identify the people".

Transport Minister Enrico Giovannini arrived in the town of Stresa, from where the cable vehicle started, to meet with local and regional authorities.

The service first began running in August 1970 and the journey takes 20 minutes.

The cable auto was travelling up the mountain when the cabin fell some 20 metres to the ground and rolled several times down the steep slopes before it was stopped by trees, Mr Severino said.

Milan noted that the cable line had been renovated in 2016 and had only recently reopened after coronavirus lockdowns in Italy curtailed travel and forced the suspension of many leisure activities.

Mottarone overlooks the picturesque Lake Maggiore.

Transport Minister Enrico Giovannini visited the site Monday and announced a commission of inquiry to investigate the "technical and organisational causes" of the disaster, while prosecutors will focus on any criminal blame.

The mountain hosts a small amusement park, Alpyland, that has a children's rollercoaster, and the area also has mountain bike paths and hiking trails.

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