Deadly Cable Car Crash In Turkey Strands Nearly 200, Prompts Dramatic Mid-Air Rescue


Dana Abizaid Contributor
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A deadly cable car accident Friday left hundreds of people stranded high above the rocky ground just outside of the Turkish city of Antalya, Euronews reported.

One person was killed and seven were injured after one of the cars struck a pole. The car bursting open and sending passengers crashing to the rocky ground while leaving over 150 people stranded mid-air, according to Euronews.

Turkish rescue teams made up of 607 search and rescue personnel and 10 helicopters worked for 23 hours to rescue 174 passengers, completing the mission Saturday, Euronews reported. (RELATED: Video Shows Dramatic Rescue Of Man Clinging To California Cliff’s Edge)

Although some passengers were still stranded after nineteen hours, others, like Istanbul resident Hatice Polat, were rescued after seven grueling hours, according to the outlet. When the power went out, the cable car flipped four or five times, Polat told the state-run Anadolu Agency, Euronews reported.

“The night was awful, we were very scared. There were children with us, they passed out,” Polat said. “It was torture being up there for seven hours. It is swaying every second, you’re constantly in fear … It was very traumatic, I don’t know how we’ll get over this trauma.”

A 54-year-old Turkish man was killed in the incident; six Turkish nationals and one Kyrgyz citizen were injured, Euronews reported, citing the Anadolu Agency.

All those injured, including two children, were rescued by Coast Guard helicopters, according to the outlet.

The BBC posted a video released by the Turkish Defense Ministry which shows the dramatic rescue of a passenger by a rescuer suspended from a cable wire connected to a helicopter. The video shows a man being hoisted to safety through the air and into a military helicopter.

The cable car attraction is run by Antalya Metropolitan Municipality and advertised as a “must-do” for tourists seeking “awesome panoramas of Antalya and the Mediterranean Sea,” Euronews reported.

The ride, which typically takes nine minutes, brings tourists from the beach to the summit of a peak more than 2,000 feet high equipped with a restaurant and a viewing platform, according to Euronews.

The Antalya Chief Public Prosecutor’s Office is investigating the accident, and a team consisting of mechanical and electrical engineers and health and safety experts has been assigned to determine the incident’s cause, Euronews reported.