Home / National News / Calif. Park Ride Leaves Riders Stranded for Hours


(NEW YORK) — When 20 people boarded the amusement park ride the WindSeeker, they expected a short thrill but instead became stranded for more than three hours and 300 feet above the ground when the ride stopped working.

The amusement park ride at Knott’s Berry Farm in Buena Vista, Calif., came to a halt 4 p.m. local time Wednesday, according to a statement from the amusement park. No injuries were reported and there was no indication anyone was in danger when the ride apparently malfunctioned.

“It just started going slower, then it stopped — that was it,” said stranded rider Jimmy Garrison.

The ride’s security system activated, park officials said. The park has no idea why the safety security system was activated at this time.

“Safety is Knott’s number one priority and we are committed to the protection of all our guests. Each of our rides is inspected, check-listed and properly maintained daily. Knott’s will continue to consistently monitor and inspect the rides and operation thereof,” said Jennifer Blazey in the statement.

“It was quite an experience,” Donna Garrison told ABC affiliate KABC, who was visiting from Baltimore. “The first half an hour was pretty rough on me. I have a fear of heights. I was on it because my husband wanted to train me to get over my fear of heights. By the end, I was.”

The ride eventually lowered everyone to safety around 7:50 p.m., according to KABC. The park says the ride will remain closed as they investigate what caused the incident.

Since the WindSeeker opened to the public in August, this is the second time the ride has broken down, according to KABC.

The ride holds up to 32 people in a two-person gondola that is supposed to swing riders for 60 seconds at a 45 degree angle with their feet dangling, according to Knott’s Berry Farm’s website.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio


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