Several dozens of passengers aboard the Sky Tower in SeaWorld, Orlando have been rescued. The theme park released a statement via Twitter a few hours ago, saying that the Sky Tower cabin is finally on the ground and that all guests and SeaWorld crew have managed to exit the ride safely. Onsite medical personnel were also on the ground ready to meet the passengers following their rescue.
Reports have said the affected SeaWorld Sky Tower ride started shortly after 12:05 p.m. when the passengers started going inside. After everyone had filed in, the Sky Tower made its way to the top of the pole to let passengers enjoy a view of the theme park. Afterwards, the ride started making its descent. When the ride was halfway down the pole, a disembark announcement reportedly came on.
According to a report from ABC News, passengers on board the SeaWorld Sky Tower were told there was a mechanical issue minutes after the disembark announcement. Moreover, they were also later told that the emergency brake had locked up and that they had to send maintenance to look into the problem. When maintenance got to the ride and released the brake, the ride started jerking up and down before it started making its way down slowly. The brake was then stuck again and maintenance had to reportedly lift the cabin off the brake to get the passengers down. The ordeal reportedly lasted for over three hours.
The SeaWorld Sky Tower stands 400 feet tall. It has long been an iconic attraction for the theme park, having been around since SeaWorld’s opening in 1973. SeaWorld did not seem to suspend rides up the Sky Tower following the incident.