CHARLOTTE, N.C. (WJZY) — It wasn’t the thrill ride they expected.
A day at Carowinds amusement park in Charlotte, North Carolina, turned scary after riders got stuck upside down on a rollercoaster for about a half hour Friday.
Brandon Allen said he was on the “Flying Cobras” ride when it stopped moving.
“My very first experience at a theme park on a roller coaster,” Allen said. “And I got stuck.”
As the amusement park thrills turned to chills, Allen said, “I personally watched my tears fall from the sky. It was terrifying.”
Allen described the ordeal, saying, “We go to the very top where they’re backing you up, and he was doing a countdown. He goes, ‘We’re sorry, we’re having some technical difficulties,’ and we thought he was joking because of the surprise element or something.”
Allen said the minutes of being stuck felt like hours.
“We were told anywhere between 35 to 45 minutes,” Allen said. “Which may not be major, but it’s a big deal when you’re just facing the ground completely. There were parents trying to talk to their children screaming, ‘It’s going to be OK!'”
Carowinds released the following statement:
“On Friday, April 29, Flying Cobras, located in County Fair at Carowinds, had an unexpected ride stoppage on the lift. The park’s maintenance team responded quickly, and at no time were guests in danger. All guests were returned safely to the station and unloaded within 30 minutes. The safety and security of our guests and associates is Carowinds’ top priority.”
Under the circumstances, fair workers did a good job, Allen said.
“I probably would’ve panicked a lot worse if not for them. They did their best to keep everyone calm.”
Last month, riders also got stuck on the Electro Spin ride.
“It seems like this is happening so often now,” Allen said. “A few weeks ago, it was another one. It’s almost like it continues to happen, and that’s what is so scary about it.”
Riders were each given two fast pass vouchers.
According to the Carowinds website, rides are licensed and inspected by the North Carolina and South Carolina Departments of Labor.
Carowinds’ on-site associates also monitor and inspect rides daily.