Carowinds' tallest ride strands passengers again - WFLA News Channel 8

Carowinds' tallest ride strands passengers again

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Photo courtesy of carowinds.com Photo courtesy of carowinds.com
CHARLOTTE, N.C. -

The tallest ride at Carowinds malfunctioned again, stranding 64 passengers high above the amusement park for more than an hour.

Carowinds says no one was injured when the WindSeeker malfunctioned Sunday afternoon. It was expected to reopen Monday.

Officials at the park on the North Carolina-South Carolina state line say a sensor malfunctioned, activating the ride's safety system as riders began to ascend the tower.

The ride similarly malfunctioned in July 2012, when 25 riders were suspended off the ground for nearly three hours.

The Windseeker, designed by Dutch-based Mondial, is a swing ride that takes people 300 feet in the air and twirls them at up to a 45-degree angle, at up to 30 mph, for about 60 seconds. The ride has had problems at other parks too.

Last September, Carowinds' parent company, Cedar Fair, temporarily shut down the WindSeeker at six of its amusement parks in the United States and Canada. Other than Carowinds, it had also malfunctioned at Cedar Point in Ohio and Knotts Berry Farm in California. No serious injuries have occurred.

Operations resumed after an investigation. Cedar Fair says the ride's safety system activated "for various reasons at various locations."

On Sunday, Logan Parce, 24, said the WindSeeker was the first ride he and some friends tried. He said the ride slowed, then stopped. After the accompanying music also stopped, a voice came over a loudspeaker saying technicians were working on the problem.

"Everyone was dealing with the situation in a different way," Parce told The Charlotte Observer (http://bit.ly/13nFpVz ). "Some people were making jokes. A couple people were freaking out. One kid got sick and threw up."

Chris Melton said he watched his 11-year-old from below.

"It was a little emotional," he said. "My kid's up there. I wanted them to get him down."

But he said his son was fine afterward.

"He said 'That was awesome. I wouldn't want to that again, but that was awesome,'" Melton said.

Other Cedar Fair parks with the WindSeeker are Kings Island in Ohio, Kings Dominion in Virginia and Canada's Wonderland in Ontario, Canada.

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