Visitors trapped in Langkawi cable car gondolas rescued; system restored

Stationary cable cars are seen suspended on the SkyCab system at Gunung Machinchang in Langkawi, on Feb 18, 2018. PHOTO: SCREENGRAB FROM YOUTUBE
The technical glitch occurred after 6pm as visitors were queueing to make the trip down from the peak of Gunung Machinchang in Langkawi. PHOTO: FACEBOOK/LANGKAWI SKYCAB

LANGKAWI (THE STAR/ASIA NEWS NETWORK) - A total of 88 passengers trapped in gondolas after the Langkawi SkyCab experienced a technical fault were successfully rescued by the Fire and Rescue Department on Sunday (Feb 18) night.

Fire and Rescue Department personnel along with Langkawi SkyCab staff managed to manually operate the gondolas to bring the passengers down.

Langkawi Fire and Rescue Dep­artment spokesman Super­intendent Mohd Fadzlullah Mohd Noor said rescuers took three hours (from 7pm to 10pm) to reach the cable car station by climbing up a jungle track.

"We are repairing the cable car at the middle station. Once we are done, we will rescue the other victims who are still stuck on the mountain.

"The problem is due to a faulty bearing," he said. When contacted at 10.45pm, he said the repairs would be done within 20 minutes.

Mohd Fadzlullah estimated that some 300 people were still stuck up Mount Machinchang.

He added that those stranded at the stations would be brought down in stages.

Earlier, Kedah Fire and Rescue Department public relations officer Mohamad Mustakim Mukhtar said a team of 16 personnel from the Langkawi Fire and Rescue Department rushed to the scene at the Oriental Village in Teluk Burau, Langkawi, after receiving reports on the incident at 6.53pm yesterday.

"As soon as we arrived on the scene at 7.06pm, the team assisted the Langkawi SkyCab staff in carrying spare parts up to the first station," he said.

Mount Machinchang is home to the famous cable car that carries passengers up 708m above sea level to the peak.

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