Three arrested for Italy cablecar accident

·1-min read

Three people are in custody in Italy following a cable car accident in which 14 people lost their lives.

The accident happened on Sunday in the country's Piedmont region, west of Lake Maggiore, on a line that links the resort town of Stresa with the 1500-metre high Mount Mottarone.

The cable car's engineer, director of the service and operative head of the service were detained on Tuesday.

The three individuals, including Luigi Nerini who manages the Mottarone cable car, carried out a "conscious action," new agency ANSA cited the public prosecutor of the province of Verbania, Olimpia Bossi, as saying following questioning overnight.

She said investigators found that a safety braking system had been "tampered with" in order to avoid delays of the cable car service.

Bossi said that to avoid a stoppage of the service, a device that deactivates the emergency brakes was kept in place - which meant that when the cable snapped the emergency system could not be activated.

The three individuals face charges of manslaughter, unintentional disaster and removal of instruments intended to prevent injury aggravated by disaster and very serious injury.

State prosecutors have confiscated surveillance camera footage of the accident, local media reported.

The footage shows the gondola approaching the mountain station when a cable rips and starts falling back towards the valley, the state prosecutor said on Italian television. Several of the 15 people on board were flung out of the gondola.

The cable car was heading from the town of Stresa up Mount Mottarone when the accident happened. The only survivor was a young boy who lost both parents and a younger sibling in the accident.

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