October 27, 2023
JAKARTA – Tragedy struck at The Geong, a popular tourist attraction located in the Limpakuwus Pine Forest of Sumbang district, Banyumas regency, Central Java, on Wednesday. The attraction’s iconic 10-meter-high glass bridge unexpectedly gave way, leaving one dead and three others injured.
The accident occurred while a group of 11 tourists from neighboring Cilacap regency was on the bridge. Sunarto, one of the workers present, reported hearing the sound of glass breaking at approximately 10 a.m.
Banyumas City Police chief Sr. Comr. Edy Suranta Sitepu confirmed the casualties on Wednesday. Two of the victims fell to the ground, while the other two clung to the bridge’s frame. One of the people who fell to the ground was declared dead shortly after the fall, while the other sustained minor injuries.
Police have secured CCTV footage from a camera positioned inside the entrance counter, with the Banyumas City Police Criminal Investigation Unit deputy chief Adj. Comr. Benny Timor Prasetyo saying on Wednesday that a crime scene investigation was scheduled for Thursday.
Eko Purnomo, chairman of the Limpakuwus Pine Forest Cooperative, had previously reached out to The Geong’s manager for a safety evaluation after the Idul Fitri holiday in April, when the tourist attraction officially began operations. The Geong and the Limpakuwus Pine Forest share the same land, although they operate under different management.
Eko’s decision to approach the manager was prompted by numerous comments on social media that raised concerns about the safety standards of the attraction.
“We received complaints through social media comments that exceeded acceptable limits. The figure almost reached 5 percent of the total number of visitors,” Eko said.
However, the bridge’s manager did not personally attend the meeting and instead sent a representative.
“There was no discussion. We only left a message [for the owner],” Eko said on Wednesday.
Eko has complied with the Banyumas City Police’s request to have the Limpakuwus Pine Forest tourist area closed for an undetermined period for the investigation.