Cedar Point closed down the Skyhawk, a popular amusement ride that swings strapped-in thrill seekers 125 feet in the air at speeds approaching 60 miles per hour after a cable snapped on the ride Saturday night, injuring at least two people. No date has been given for when – or if – the Skyhawk will be re-opened.
Cedar Point’s initial statement about the accident and injuries resulting from the Skyhawk’s snapped cable read as follows:
“At approximately 10 p.m., a cable on one of the Skyhawk swing ride’s carriages disconnected. The ride’s crew immediately shut down the ride and notified the park’s emergency personnel. The cable came in contact with two guests. One was treated and released at the scene. As a precaution, the other was transported to a local hospital for evaluation.”
A Detroit Free Press report quotes Tom Achtziger, a Cedar Point season ticket holder who was on board the Skyhawk with his children when the cable snapped. Achtziger took pictures while trapped on the ride and is quoted saying:
“It was awful. When the cable broke they didn’t stop the ride. They shut down the power and the ride kept swinging, letting gravity take over… meanwhile the cable was whipping around smacking the ride and destroying things on the ground. We are all lucky that there were no more serious injuries. Some of these pictures were taken while we were still trapped in our seats as the ride would not release the safety belts.”
The Plain Dealer quotes another spectator who was at the park – though not on the Skyhawk – when the accident happened at Cedar Point:
“After the cable broke, the ride slowed down and eventually stopped. Everyone was screaming and very scared.”
Cedar Point is the country’s fourth largest amusement park and is among the most popular tourist destinations in the Midwest, drawing crowds from all over the country.
According to the Free Press report, one of the injured persons was treated for minor injuries on the scene and another was taken to the hospital for precautionary reasons. After treatment, the second injured person was released.
This isn’t the first time Cedar Point has had to close down Skyhawk. The popular ride was closed down in 2013 for reasons unrelated to the cable that snapped on Saturday.
Cedar Point remains open, though park-goers will be unable to ride Skyhawk until Cedar Point is able to determine what caused the cable to snap.
“Safety is our top priority,” says Bryan Edwards, a spokesperson for Cedar Point.
[Images Via Bing and Tom Achtziger]