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Windseeker still closed following Calif. malfunction

Melissa Topey • Oct 11, 2012 at 5:05 AM

Cedar Fair officials recently shut down the 301-foot ride at all its amusement parks, following various malfunctions with WindSeeker rides.  

The ride has malfunctioned at Cedar Point, Knott’s Berry Farm in California, and at Carowinds in South Carolina.

“WindSeeker is still shut down,” Cedar Point spokeswoman Annie Zelm said. “There has been no decision on when they will restart, until we learn what caused them to go down.”

The WindSeeker malfunctioned June 2 at Cedar Point, stranding 29 riders about halfway up the ride for more than an hour before they were eventually lowered to the ground.

Then, on July 14, a WindSeeker ride at Carowinds malfunctioned, leaving 25 people stranded 30 feet off the ground, said Stacy Frole, a Cedar Fair spokeswoman.

It was a similar story a few weeks ago at Knott’s Berry Farm. When the WindSeeker ride there stopped working, it left 15 riders dangling in the air. It then happened a second time

Sept. 19, leaving 20 guests stuck about 300 feet up in the air for four hours.

After that, Cedar Fair shut down all six WindSeeker rides, which also includes Kings Island near Cincinnati, Kings Dominion in Virginia, and Canada’s Wonderland, near Toronto.

The company is looking into the problem.

“Safety is our No. 1 priority, and similar with other rides that may close, we have regular communications with the manufacturer,” Frole said. “In all situations, the safety systems worked the way they were designed to and guests were brought down in the safest way possible.”

Zelm pointed out that company officials took it upon themselves to shut down the rides — the move was not mandated by the Ohio Department of Agriculture’s ride inspection division.

“We want to make sure it’s not a problem with the ride itself,” Zelm said. “It’s to ensure rider safety.”

WindSeeker rides at all Cedar Fair parks will remain closed until the company pinpoints the cause of the problems.

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