Rollercoaster riders stuck upside down for hours when ride suddenly stops
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Passengers were left hanging for hours after a rollercoaster at the Forest County Festival in Wisconsin broke down.
The eight thriller-seekers on board the Fire Ball were reportedly stuck for around three hours before firefighters were able to figure out how to safely bring them down.
The Fire Ball coaster, which looks like a giant loop, is supposed to send riders around and around the loop; however, it malfunctioned, leaving all eight of the passengers hanging upside down at the top of the loop.
Fire Department Captain Brennan Cook spoke to WJFW-TV, telling the outlet the ride stopped due to mechanical problems.
“All we know is that there is a mechanical failure with the ride where it became stuck in the upright position,” said the captain of the Crandon Fire Department.
“The ride was recently inspected by the state of Wisconsin here on site and at this time, we do not have any other information.”
"Families are being reunited with people as they come down off of the ride from the rescuers and everybody seems to be doing the best they can given the circumstances," he said amidst the rescue operation.
Later in a press release posted to Facebook, the Fire Department said that 'Due to the height of the ride, specialised technical rescue teams were needed to remove riders from the ride.'
To rescue all eight of the riders, the first responders used three ladder trucks, including one with a 100-foot platform, to get them all down safely.
While the first rider came down at 3:20 pm, approximately two hours after the Fire Ball got stuck, the last passenger didn’t have both feet back on the ground until 5:00 pm.
In a heroic moment posted on Facebook by Scott Brass, a young woman told the rescuers to help out one of the older male passengers struggling a bit more before helping herself.
An off-duty firefighter who had specialised rope training was also at the scene and assisted with the rescue mission.
There were nine ambulances on site as there were many concerns regarding the health and medical needs of the eight riders.
While one person was transported to hospital the others were treated by emergency medical services at the festival.