Seven-year-old saved by tree branches after falling from cable car at Chinese beauty spot

Accident sees services suspended at scenic area on outskirts of Beijing

PUBLISHED : Wednesday, 04 October, 2017, 4:43pm
UPDATED : Wednesday, 04 October, 2017, 5:56pm

A seven-year-old was saved by tree branches after falling from a cable car in a scenic area in Beijing, state media reported.

The accident happened on Tuesday morning at the Shilinxia Scenic Area in the capital’s Pinggu district, according to Xinhua.

An eyewitness told The Beijing News that the child was caught by tree branches below after falling from the boarding platform.

The child was taken to hospital after the accident, the witness added, but the injuries received were not thought to be life-threatening.

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The local government of Pinggu district released an official statement late Tuesday afternoon on its Weibo page confirming the news, saying that the child had been about to board a cable car with the youngster’s grandparents.

Staff immediately called emergency services and the child had been rescued, it added.

It was not clear whether the accident had happened at the top or bottom of the cable car ride and how far the child had fallen before the branches broke their fall.

Tourists at the scene posted photos on Weibo of the cable cars and viewing platform, telling others not to visit the area because the cable cars had stopped operating after the accident.

Another witness who was riding a cable car at the time of the accident said: “I was trapped in the cable car while two rescue staff below used walkie-talkies to communicate. I heard one of them say that they found the child.”

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Social media posts on Wednesday suggested that the cable cars remained suspended throughout the day, but other services continued to operate as normal.

The local authorities said the “relevant departments were carrying out further work” – suggesting an investigation was under way.

Shilinxia Scenic Area, about 100km east of Beijing city centre, is known for its large glass sightseeing platform that allows visitors to see breathtaking views of the surrounding mountain gorge. Tourists who do not fancy a long uphill hike use the cable car to reach the platform, which is 400 metres above the valley floor.