San Francisco cable car accidents costs millions

FILE - In this file photo from Jan. 21, 2011, from left, Franco Garavanno, Gustavo Ferrari and German Garavanno, who are visiting from Buenos Aires, ride a cable car up Hyde Street in San Francisco. In this city of innumerable tourist attractions, the clanging cable cars stand out as a top draw. They also stand out for the inordinate number of accidents and the millions of dollars annually the city pays out to settle lawsuits for broken bones, severed feet and bad bruises caused when 19th Century technology runs headlong into 21st Century city traffic and congestion.  Recently, five passengers and two workers were injured after an inch-long bolt in the track caused their cable car to slam to a sudden stop.  (AP Photo/Marcio Jose Sanchez)
FILE - In this file photo from Jan. 21, 2011, from left, Franco Garavanno, Gustavo Ferrari and German Garavanno, who are visiting from Buenos Aires, ride a cable car up Hyde Street in San Francisco. In this city of innumerable tourist attractions, the clanging cable cars stand out as a top draw. They also stand out for the inordinate number of accidents and the millions of dollars annually the city pays out to settle lawsuits for broken bones, severed feet and bad bruises caused when 19th Century technology runs headlong into 21st Century city traffic and congestion. Recently, five passengers and two workers were injured after an inch-long bolt in the track caused their cable car to slam to a sudden stop. (AP Photo/Marcio Jose Sanchez)

SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — In this city of innumerable tourist attractions, the clanging, hill-conquering cable cars stand out as a top draw.

The quaint conveyances also stand out for the inordinate number of accidents and the millions of dollars annually the city pays out to settle lawsuits for broken bones.

In the last three years, the city has paid nearly $8 million to settle about four dozen legal claims arising from cable car accidents.

The mayor and other city officials say the accidents are rare events and defend the cable cars as a top tourist draw in a city that counts tourism as its top industry.

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