Child falls to death from suspension bridge in Nantou

2019/11/04 16:36:23 fontsize-small fontsize-default fontsize-big
Child falls to death from suspension bridge in Nantou

Taipei, Nov. 4 (CNA) A 2-year-old boy died Sunday when he fell from a suspension bridge in Nantou County, central Taiwan, according to police.

The child, who was walking on the Aowanda suspension bridge with his parents, fell through a gap under the metal mesh railing and plunged about 90 meters to the riverbed below, police said.

He had no vital signs when he was rescued and was pronounced dead on arrival at hospital, according to police.

The boy's father, identified only by the surname Hsu (許), told the press Monday that his wife was holding the child's hand as they walked across the suspension bridge, but a sudden gust of wind caused the bridge to sway heavily, and the 2-year-old lost his balance.

The child fell through a gap at the bottom of the metal mesh railing before his mother could grab him, Hsu said.

Addressing rumors that the child was walking by himself, Hsu said his wife was holding the boy's hand the entire time before he fell.

Hsu said he himself was walking in front of them, holding the hand of his elder son.

Meanwhile, the Nantou District Prosecutors Office said its investigators will inspect the bridge, which has been closed, after they examine the body.

The suspension bridge is one of the main attractions at the Aowanda National Forest Recreation Area in Nantou's Ren'ai Township. The bridge is 180 meters long and hangs 90 meters above ground, with 1.4 meters of protective metal mesh on both sides.

Commenting on the tragedy, Council of Agriculture (COA) chief Chen Chi-chung (陳吉仲) said the council's Forestry Bureau will conduct a comprehensive review of the basic infrastructure in all national forest recreation areas throughout the country.

According to the Forestry Bureau's website, it usually carries out regular monthly inspections of the Aowanda bridge.

(By Hsiao Po-yang, Liu Kuan-ting and Chiang Yi-ching)
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