A man reportedly fell from his seat when a restraint ‘came up’ on the Black Pearl ride at Lightwater Valley.
The inverting ship ride’s automatic restraint apparently failed, freeing a man who had to be held onto by a carer.
Paul Marshall told the Richmondshire Today website that the restraint ‘suddenly came up’, and that he had to hold onto the man to prevent him from falling the length of the ride.
“It was an absolutely horrendous moment. He came completely out of his seat,” he said.
“I grabbed one of his wrists and he smashed off the seats and swung right into me but it meant I was then able to grab his other wrist.
“He was hanging there in the air with just me holding him. He’s not a small man and if he had fallen on someone else he could have killed them and himself.”
Lightwater Valley confirmed that an incident took place on 14 July.
“A full investigation has been carried out and visitors can be assured that their safety is always of paramount importance to us,” a spokesperson said.
“We work to the highest health and safety standards and are committed to ensuring the health, safety and welfare of all our visitors and employees.”
Ride Rater understands that the ride has remained closed since the incident, although it is not known if the Health and Safety Executive are involved in any investigative work.
Dating from the 1980s the Black Pearl was relocated from the closed Loudoun Castle theme park in 2011, and forms part of the pirate-themed Skeleton Cove area that was opened in that year.
A Traumboat model from German manufacturers Weber, it has previously been located at Alton Towers and Pleasure Island.
The model features automatic lap bar restraints, with the ship being enclosed by a metallic bars as an additional safety measure.