UPDATE: Orlando Eye reopens after shutdown Friday

Orange Co. Fire Rescue: 66 riders off attraction Friday; no injuries reported


ORLANDO, Fla. – The Orlando Eye has reopened after the attraction stopped Friday afternoon with dozens of people on board with no injuries, authorities said.

A spokesperson for the Orlando Eye said, "After a thorough examination of operating systems for the Orlando Eye, the team of technicians has successfully completed the necessary work to resolve the technical default that occurred Friday within the system that monitors the wheel's position. Following the repairs, the technical team ran numerous tests on the attraction and has restored it to full operations."

Orange County Fire Rescue said 66 people were rescued from the Eye. They were on the attraction for about three hours Friday.

At 3:45 p.m. Friday, the operating systems for the Orlando Eye indicated a technical default with the system that monitors the wheel position of the Orlando Eye, officials said in a statement.

The attraction automatically shuts down if communication with the system is interrupted as a safety precaution, according to Orlando Eye officials.

OCFR responded to the scene after 5 p.m. Friday.

"Immediately following the default, the operations team began working to resolve the matter to allow guests to disembark the attraction. A backup system was employed that allowed capsules to be moved to the platform and opened manually," Orlando Eye officials said. "Throughout the process, representatives from the Orlando Eye maintained two-way audio and visual communications with guests to ensure their safety and comfort. We sincerely apologize for the inconvenience this caused to those guests that were on the attraction."

Guests were assisted with exiting gondolas, OCFR said. Medical assessment and aid were provided as needed.

Special operations climbers were on standby if needed for an elevated rescue, according to OCFR. All guests were able to get off the Orlando Eye with no injuries reported.

"Our first priority was ensuring guests to safely disembark the attraction. With that completed, we are now focused on reinstating the systems and restoring full operations of the Orlando Eye," official said.

The Orlando Eye, which opened in May, was shut down later in the month because of technical issues.

In that incident, a representative said the Eye was closed after the operating system detected an irregularity. Officials would not elaborate on the problem but said they stopped the ride as a precaution.

Tickets for the 400-foot observation wheel range from $18-$32. The Orlando Eye is typically open from 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. For ticket-holders who missed their opportunity to experience the Orlando Eye on Friday, tickets remain valid for 30 days. No refunds were given to riders stuck on the attraction Friday.

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