A Harry Potter ride in Universal Studios Orlando broke down with approximately 12 people stuck on board Monday morning. According to My News 13, Orlando firefighters were dispatched to rescue the trapped riders in the Harry Potter theme park at 11:35 a.m.
The ride is a Harry Potter-themed indoor roller coaster that takes park guests through Gringotts Bank from the Harry Potter stories, playing out the scene from the films wherein the characters enter the vaults of the bank and escape on the back of a dragon. A spokesman for the Harry Potter theme park, Tom Schroder, reported that the ride came to a stop due to a technical glitch.
“The attraction has been operating wonderfully and thousands of our guests have had a great experience over the past couple weeks,” said Schroder. “A little while ago, a tech glitch caused the ride to come to a safe stop. We have assisted nearly all our guests off the ride and have called the fire department for help with one vehicle. Once we have helped those guests off the ride, we will focus on re-opening it as soon as we can.”
According to fire officials, the entire ride had to be evacuated but none of the Harry Potter park guests were injured during the malfunction. The trapped riders were suspended 7 feet off the ground for over an hour, according to Click Orlando. It took until 1 p.m. to safely remove all the passengers from the Harry Potter attraction.
The host of Orlando Attractions Magazine‘s “Attractions: The Show,” Banks Lee, claimed that it’s not unusual for new rides like the Harry Potter Gringotts ride to have some issues shortly after opening.
“With all new attractions all over the world, things are bound to happen as it’s getting used to guests riding it constantly. It’s not an issue at all,” Lee said in an interview. “With a ride like Gringotts, it’s one of the most advanced rides in the history of the world.”
In fact, the Harry Potter Gringotts ride has already been reopened after the breakdown. According to WFTV, the roller coaster’s technical issues have been fixed and the ride has been opened back up to park guests only a day after it broke down.
This isn’t the first time a rollercoaster has left riders stranded for well over an hour. One broken rollercoaster in Cedar Point left riders suspended for so long they started taking selfies.
The Harry Potter theme park has gained national attention for its astonishingly authentic rides and attractions that allow fans of the Harry Potter books and films to step into the universe and experience the story first hand. For those who want an even more authentic Harry Potter experience, there’s a live-action role-play event that allows you to experience life at Hogwarts.