Sea World San Diego scare: 16 people rescued after being trapped on the Skyride for hours
Rescue teams were reportedly brought in at around 7:20 p.m after 16 people were stuck on five different gondolas in the theme park.
After being trapped in a SeaWorld ride in San Diego for many hours, more than a dozen guests have been rescued by the San Diego Fire-Rescue, NBC San Diego reported. Rescue teams were reportedly brought in at around 7:20 p.m after 16 people were stuck on five different gondolas in the theme park, said SDFD Battalion, Chief Robert Logan. Among the 16 trapped, one of them is reportedly an infant and another a partially paralyzed guest.
The guests were reportedly rescued one at a time by roping them down into boats in Mission Bay which were then taken to a nearby dock, the Chief reportedly revealed. "All the guests are currently safe," SeaWorld said in a released statement. "Due to an unusual gust of significant wind, the operations of the Bayside Skyride stopped," they further added, explaining the cause of the untoward incident. "A number of guests are currently on the Skyride seated in 5 gondolas. We are currently working with San Diego Fire & Rescue and the San Diego Lifeguards to evacuate the guests from the ride. We practice emergency evacuation procedures with local first responders annually. We are in contact with the guests via intercom, and they have been made aware of the evacuation procedures." The park also said that the guests had blankets onboard and that would woud "conduct a thorough inspection of the rides" before they open to the public again after the rescue operations are finished.
Jonathan Sherr, a guest stuck on the ride with his 15-year-old son reportedly said that the wind "just started rocking the cart, and I looked up at the cable, and right when I was looking up at the cable shaking violently, we just stopped. I won’t be coming back," he said. He continued, "Watching the cable shake violently was a pretty daunting thing." Sherr's daughter, who had also accompanied her family to the park got off earlier from the same ride, said, "We would have been stuck up there if we didn’t go before them. We were the last ones to get off up there." Sherr also alleged that the theme park did not communicate with them in the first hour that they were trapped.
San Diego police told FOX5 News that around six gondolas stopped functioning on Monday night after a big gust of wind tripped a circuit breaker on "Bayside Skyride." Authorities estimated at the time that between 15 and 30 people are trapped, some of them in gondolas suspended above water. The National Weather Service says it was about 49 degrees in San Diego at the time.