Coney Island’s Legendary Cyclone Roller Coaster Strands Riders On Opening Day

There’s nothing like that first day at the amusement park, when it feels like spring is maybe, possibly, finally on its way, when you get to climb into that roller coaster for its very first ride of the season… and then you’re stuck high up in the air, wondering how it all went wrong. That’s the tale of yesterday’s Coney Island visitors who scored a free ride on opening day yesterday.

The Cyclone roller coaster is 88 years old, and as such, beloved by visitors to Luna Park in Brooklyn’s Coney Island area. The first 100 people to enter the park yesterday were offered the first ride of the season for free, reports CBS New York, in what was supposed to be a gloriously happy event.

Instead, riders were forced to climb down from the coaster when it got stuck near the summit during its opening cruise, about 10 feet from the highest point. About two dozen riders were helped down and along a walkway next to the tracks by staff members, after 15 minutes of being stranded on the train.

Though officials say a safety mechanism keeps the train from rolling backwards on an upward climb, riders say it wasn’t fun.

“We could feel that there was something wrong,” one woman told CBS New York. “It started slowing down.”

It’s unclear what caused the train to get stuck, but a spokeswoman said it was likely a small mechanical glitch. The ride will remain closed until an inspection finds that it’s safe to reopen.

Coney Island Cyclone Gets Stuck On First Public Ride Of Season [CBS New York]