Riders on Coney Island’s famous Cyclone roller coaster got their first thrill of the season Sunday, but not for the reason they were expecting.
The Cyclone stalled at the top of one of the rides 12 drops, forcing riders to walk down the track to safety.
According to Fox News, the malfunction happened during the roller coaster’s first run of the season, and several photos appeared on social media sites showing park workers escorting riders down the narrow sides of the roller coasters tracks.
The Cyclone isn’t ready for spring! The Coney Island coaster got stuck on its first ride of the season. pic.twitter.com/rX3SObRkuc
— amNewYork (@amNewYork) March 29, 2015
The 88-year-old wooden roller coaster was making its first run around noon Sunday, during the spring opening celebration of Luna Park. The New York Times reports that the first 100 riders got a free ride, which turned out to be a bit scarier than they had planned.
The coaster cars got stuck several feet from the gate at the uppermost point of the track on the first of the rides big drops. No one was harmed, but several of the riders — who had been lined up since before dawn for the free ride — said the incident, and subsequent climb down to safety, was quite frightening.
“It was terrifying, because I was up there and everything was spinning,” Gabriella Centeno told NBC New York. “I didn’t know what to do.”
Another rider was grateful for the park staff’s assistance, saying she might not have been able to make it down on her own.
“I’m scared of heights, but with their help I made it down… This was insane.”
David Zubin, who was in the last car when the ride got stuck, told AM New York, which posted a YouTube video of the evacuation, that the climb down off the roller coaster was the scariest thing he had ever done.
“The bricks, walking down, looked like it was going to break when you stepped on it.”
Park officials did not say how many people were on the ride at the time it stalled. Emergency services were not needed for the rescue because the park staff handled the evacuation. Luna Park spokesperson Angie Morris said the ride should be operating as normal again soon.
“Safety is the number one priority for our guests at Luna Park.” she said. “This was an isolated mechanical issue and it is quickly being repaired. No one was injured. Those on the ride were safely evacuated and will be able to ride again for free.”
Do you love roller coasters? Check out this Inquisitr report on the Fury 325, touted as the world’s fastest and tallest “giga coaster,” which opened earlier this week in North Carolina’s Carowinds theme park.
[Image via New York Times]