16 people were left stranded for hours in heavy winds after gondolas at SeaWorld malfunctioned

  • On Monday night, 16 people were trapped on a gondola ride at SeaWorld in San Diego, California.
  • The ride malfunctioned when an “unusual gust of significant wind” blew.
  • All 16 passengers were rescued, the San Diego Fire Department said.
  • The inspection will begin on Tuesday and there is no estimate for when the ride will reopen, a representative for SeaWorld told INSIDER.

On Monday night, SeaWorld park-goers were trapped for hours in San Diego when a weather-related malfunction caused a gondola-style ride to shut down, Fox News reported.

San Diego police told the outlet that around 7:22 p.m. after an “unusual gust of significant wind” caused the ride to cease functioning, leaving 16 passengers stranded on five gondolas, which were suspended on cables. The wind reportedly tripped the circuit breaker.

Jonathon Sherr, who was trapped on the gondola with his 15-year-old son, told NBC San Diego that being trapped on the ride was “pretty daunting.”

“I looked up at the cable, and right when I was looking up at the cable shaking violently, we just stopped,” he said.

The San Diego Fire Department tweeted about the rescue operation as it unfolded.

Ultimately, by 11 p.m. all 16 guests were rescued, per the fire department. Some people were rescued via harnesses, others by lifeguard boats, per Fox News. A representative for SeaWorld told INSIDER that the guests were blankets aboard the gondolas that guests could use while they waited to be rescued.

Read more: A cruise ship was filmed crashing into a pier in Puerto Rico

“Guest safety is our top priority,” SeaWorld said in a statement to INSIDER. “Once our guests are cared for, we will conduct a thorough inspection of the ride prior to re-opening. We apologise for the inconvenience this has caused the guests.”

The spokesperson told INSIDER that there is no estimate for when the Skyride will reopen.

UPDATE: February 19, 2019: This post has been updated with a statement from SeaWorld.

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