Emergency workers rescue people trapped in cable cars in the French Alps

By REUTERS
September 9, 2016 09:54
1 minute read.

LYON, France - Emergency workers scrambled at first light on Friday to rescue 33 people, including one child, trapped in cable cars high over the slopes of Mont Blanc, the cable car operator said.

BFM TV reported that repairs to tangled cables had been successful and that those stranded were being brought back to the base of the ride.

More than 110 people were initially trapped on the 5 km (3 mile) ride between two mountain peaks at an altitude of over 3,000 meters (9,840 feet) when three cables became tangled at 5:30 p.m. on Thursday.

In a statement, La Compagnie du Mont Blanc, which runs the cable car, gave no reason for the accident but said the cables could become tangled after an abrupt halt to the system or in strong winds.

Four helicopters rescued 65 people from the four-person cable cars before night fell over Mont Blanc, the highest mountain in the Alps. Another dozen people were evacuated during the night by rescuers using ropes.

The cable car connects Aiguille du Midi peak on the French side of the mountain and the Helbronner summit on the Italian border. The panoramic ride over glaciers usually takes 30 minutes to complete.


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