Eight people, including children, are left stranded on top of 170ft broken down French fairground ride OVERNIGHT as worried families brawl with staff
- Five teenagers and two adults stuck on top of a 170ft tall fairground ride
- Carousel broke down at 8.30pm on New Year’s Eve, in Rennes, France
- Firetruck ladder was too short, so helicopter was called in to help with rescue
- Rescue mission took nine hours to complete, with the last person saved at 6am
- Tensions were high and families on the ground and funfair staff begun fighting
Joe Middleton For Mailonline
Eight people ended up seeing in the New Year on top of a 170ft tall fairground ride in Rennes, France, when the carousel broke down and it took emergency services more than nine hours to get them down.
Five teenagers and three adults had embarked on what was meant to have been a short but thrilling ride at around 8.30pm on New Year’s Eve.
Today, they have spoken of their fear and ‘trauma’ after spending the night several hundred feet in the air.
The last person was brought back to solid ground at 6am on New Year’s Day following a tense rescue mission which also saw family members and fairground workers end up in a physical fight, resulting in unknown persons using tear gas.
Bad start to 2019: Eight people ended up stuck on top of a 170ft tall fairground ride in Rennes, France, when the carousel broke down at 8.30pm on New Year’s Eve
‘It was long, it was cold and it was frightening,’ said 23-year-old Antoine, wrapped in a survival blanket around dawn Tuesday.
‘I never thought I’d get out. It was very traumatic,’ he said after the fire brigade brought an end to the nine-hour ordeal in the Brittany city of Rennes.
Five teenagers, Antoine and two other adults had climbed aboard the 170ft metal arm called ‘BomberMaxxx’ for a spin above the town centre during the evening.
‘We saw sparks, heard a big metal noise and feared the worst,’ said Beatrice, mother of 13-year-old Louna.
The ride’s owner Alexandre Thinel said ‘a new part broke and it blocked’, adding: ‘It’s a technical incident that has never happened before.
‘Fortunately there was no danger to clients. The only problem was getting them down,’ he said.
Rescue mission: It took emergency services more than nine hours to get them all down from the ride at the funfair
Helping hand: Firefighters arrived, but their ladder only reached 100ft, so a helicopter was eventually called into help airlift some of the eight people stuck on the ride
One at a time: A teenage girl is lowered onto a firetruck ladder during the rescue mission
Safe on the ground: The girl smiles as she is back on solid ground after hours on the ride
Firemen made several attempts to extract the revellers but their 100ft ladder was too short.
A helicopter was later called in and the first to be saved was winched up to the helicopter just before midnight.
Then over several hours a rope system was set up to help evacuate the others one by one.
In the early hours of the morning a fight broke out between the families and fairground workers. Teargas filled the air but it was unclear who used it.
The last person to be saved touched the ground at 6am (5am GMT).
‘Next year, I’m staying at home with my champagne and biscuits,’ said 47-year-old Nicholas.