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Ferris wheel riders rescued following malfunction at Bromley Christmas market

PUBLISHED: 10:21 19 November 2019 | UPDATED: 10:21 19 November 2019

Bromley firefighters were called in to rescue all those riding at the time of the breakdown. Picture: Barry Driscoll

Bromley firefighters were called in to rescue all those riding at the time of the breakdown. Picture: Barry Driscoll

Archant

Twenty-six people were rescued from a Ferris wheel in Bromley when it broke down on Sunday.

Firefighters were able to manually rotate the Ferris wheel ride to get the people off. Picture: Barry DriscollFirefighters were able to manually rotate the Ferris wheel ride to get the people off. Picture: Barry Driscoll

Firefighters were called in to help members of the public escape from the big wheel when it became stuck at a Christmas market in the High Street.

A London Fire Brigade spokesman said: "A drive cable on the wheel had snapped, which made the wheel inoperable. Crews manually rotated the wheel and worked to get the passengers off the cabs one at a time.

"Firefighters rescued 10 adults and 16 children and they were given precautionary checks at the scene by London Ambulance Service crews."

Witness Barry Driscoll said: "Everyone remained remarkably calm, but there were some young kids perched high up for a long time, some without an adult in the carriage.

"At no point were there screams or any indication of panic. In fact, I saw no distress in anyone involved.

"It was clear that the operation to rotate the wheel was not straightforward, and required teamwork from the ride and fire crews.

"The rescue was almost laid back - makes you proud to be European.

"I turned to my wife and said, 'What goes around, comes around.......well, with a little help from the fire brigade'.

"The incident was over in time for the main festivities to start on schedule.

"It wasn't clear if those that had been stranded received a refund, although perhaps from the thrill of being rescued by the real Fireman Sam they might have considered they got a great deal?"

Station commander Paul Osborne, who was at the scene, added: "Crews worked hard and quickly to manually rotate the Ferris wheel and assist members of the public to safety.

"We were able to get everyone off safely and there were no reports of any injuries."

The brigade was called at around 4.30pm and the incident was over for firefighters an hour later.

Two fire engines from Bromley Fire Station and a fire rescue unit from Croydon Fire Station were at the scene.

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