Twenty-One Passengers Stranded 148 Feet Above Knott's Berry Farm For 7 Hours
Twenty-one people got an unexpected thrill Friday at Knott’s Berry Farm in Buena Park. The park attendees spent nearly eight hours stuck in the Sky Cabin ride, hanging 148 feet above the ground from about 2 p.m. until rescue workers with the Orange County Fire Authority brought them safely down before 10 p.m.
According to KABC, park crews spent roughly three hours unsuccessfully attempting to lower the ride. Then, around 5 p.m., the fire crew was called to the park.
The OCFA team attempted to reach the Sky Cabin by ladder, but their ladder was too short.
Ultimately, around 7 p.m., the firefighters climbed the central hub of the ride then rappelled down on to the top of the SkyCabin, reports City News Service A rope-and-harness system was rigged to lower each stranded passenger one-by-one.
"We have firefighters in the cab with the occupants,” OCFA Capt. Larry Kurtz, said, notes KABC. “No one is in any medical distress. So we're going to affix a harness onto each one of them and one at a time we're going to lower them down to the ground. …It sounds scary, but these guys, they train for this all the time. We have very, very strong ropes that have 9,000 pounds of breaking strength on them."
“All 20 guests and one ride operator were safely on the ground by 9:54pm,” the park wrote in an official statement on Friday. “Each of Knott’s rides is inspected, check-listed and properly maintained daily. Sky Cabin will remain closed until the park’s investigation into the cause of the incident is completed.”
According to City News Service, the Sky Cabin previously broke down in June 2008, leaving 23 passengers stuck for about an hour. The ride was closed in May 2010 for an 18-month remodeling.