‘Parts started breaking’: Videos show people rushing to stabilize wobbly carnival ride in Michigan

DETROIT – People rushed to stabilize a malfunctioning ride Thursday night at the National Cherry Festival in northern Michigan, according to festival organizers.

Videos shared to social media of the incident in Traverse City show the Magic Carpet ride vehicle descending from several stories in the air. As it swings in a pendulum motion, the base of the ride becomes clearly unstable. It begins to rock back and forth, threatening to tip over.

One person on the ground can be seen raising their hands to their head in disbelief before running toward the ride and hanging onto the front railing. More than a dozen people use their weight to stabilize the front of the ride as others nearby shout expletives.

“We were walking by and saw the ride going faster than it normally does and then parts started breaking,” Kobe Ramirez of Traverse City told the Traverse City Record-Eagle. “I think if they hadn’t been holding it, it would have fallen back.”

There were no injuries, according to festival spokesperson Susan Wilcox Olson.

Joey Even, of Traverse City-based Arnold’s Amusements, told the Record-Eagle the ride came off its blocking.

Kat Paye, the festival’s executive director, said the magic carpet ride that “malfunctioned” was removed and was en route to its manufacturer to be inspected.

“Inspections of the rides happen daily and written reports are filled out and completed on each ride every morning prior to operation,” Paye said. “I am grateful for the quick response of staff and community members and very thankful that there were no injuries.”

The USA TODAY Network reached out to Arnold’s Amusements and its representative but was unable to reach them for comment.

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Hauck reported from Chicago. Contact breaking news intern Kyle Davidson at kdavidson@freepress.com. Follow him on Twitter @jrndavidson.

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