Cable car accident in Piedmont (Italy): The youngest victim was only 2 years old

The disaster happened on Sunday noon at 12.30 p.m .: In the Italian holiday resort of Stresa (Piedmont region), a cable car gondola with at least 15 people suddenly crashes – and rushes 20 meters down. In the end, 14 people are dead.

The horror disaster caused horror across Europe!

The cause of the accident is currently suspected to be a cable tear in the uppermost area of ​​the line. It seems impossible that the cabin was overloaded, as it can accommodate more than 30 passengers.

The massive steel cable of the gondola is said to have broken, causing the cabin to crashPhoto: NEWS5

Infrastructure Minister Enrico Giovannini (63) announced the establishment of a commission of inquiry. The Milan public prosecutor launched an investigation into “manslaughter and negligent assault”.

The dead

The newspaper “Il Corriere della Sera” initially reported that there were Germans among the dead. A spokesman for the Foreign Office contradicted this on Sunday evening: “We currently have no evidence that Germans are among the victims.”

▶ ︎ But the fact is: Among the dead were five Israelis, including a young family. Her little son (2) also died in the accident. He is the youngest victim.

According to media reports, a researcher (27) from Iran who recently studied in Rome and at least six Italians were also killed. There was initially no information about the nationalities of the other dead.

The gondola crashed in an area that was difficult to access and is said to have rolled over several times

The gondola crashed in an area that was difficult to access and is said to have rolled over several timesPhoto: / AP

Among the victims was another child (9) who died hours after the accident in Turin hospital, his serious injuries, as the ambulance service announced in the evening.

Another child (5) was therefore still being treated in the hospital. She was reported to have suffered head trauma and broken legs in the accident.

Mayoress: “A terrible scene”

The mayor of Stresa, Marcella Severino, was at the scene of the accident, said according to the newspaper “La Repubblica”: “Witnesses saw how the cabin moved quickly backwards and then began to lurch at the height of the pylon and was thrown down.”

Mayor Marcella Severino at the scene of the accident

Mayor Marcella Severino at the scene of the accidentPhoto: EPA

The gondola also hit a mast and “rolled over two or three times on the ground before it hit trees,” the mayor continued. Some of the dead were thrown from the cabin. Hikers nearby heard a loud hissing sound before the crash, she said.

“It was a terrible, terrible scene,” said the politician to the Italian broadcaster “SkyTG24”.

Regional President: Tragedy takes everyone’s breath away

President Sergio Mattarella (79) and Prime Minister Mario Draghi (73) expressed their “deep pain” over the loss of many human lives. The regional president of Piedmont, Alberto Cirio, 48, said the tragedy was taking everyone’s breath away.

The President of the Liguria Region, Giovanni Toti (52), spoke of a tragedy that happened exactly at the time when Italy was enjoying the lifting of massive restrictions after months of lockdown. He spoke of a “Sunday of reopenings that should be full of hope”.

A policeman salutes a hearse after the tragedy

A policeman salutes a hearse after the tragedyPhoto: Antonio Calanni / dpa

The cable car, popular with tourists, connects the holiday resort of Stresa, located on Lake Maggiore, with the almost 1500 meter high mountain Mottarone, which offers a spectacular view of Lake Maggiore and the Alps, in 20 minutes. The cable car was closed between 2014 and 2016 for maintenance work.

In Europe there have been serious accidents with cable cars from time to time. The last time nine German skiers were killed in Sölden, Austria, in September 2005, when a cargo helicopter lost a concrete block that fell on a cable car.


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