GHOST TOWN: 'It’s so eerie being there' at Dreamworld
A TOOWOOMBA woman has spoken of her "eerie" experience at Dreamworld on the Gold Coast just days before one of its iconic rides stopped, and riders became trapped, this afternoon.
The woman was at the theme park three days ago and rode the Buzz Saw successfully, but the eerie sense that lingered around the park turned her stomach.
The ride went off without a hitch, she said, but the theme park's emptiness really hit home.
"It's so eerie being there with so few people around," she told The Chronicle.
"You wonder if it goes wrong, who is there to help?"
The woman said she and a friend rode the Buzz Saw without incident - just adrenaline and terror for which it was designed.
But on seeing reports the same ride she endured three days ago was stuck, its passengers trapped, "made me feel sick".
She described the theme park as a "ghost town" with virtually no patrons and fewer staff.
"Stuck atop a theme ride with your back to the ground for half an hour, no knowing what is about to happen, would be terrifying," the woman said.
"Those rides are meant to take seconds, not leave you dangling.
"I can only image the sense of panic and terror those stuck on the ride would have felt waiting to be rescued and lowered back down."
About eight people were on the Buzz Saw ride, one of the park's 'Big Nine' rides, when it stopped just shy of the top of the first tower which then sends the carriages into a series of loops, twists and turns.
Dreamworld, in a statement, said the incident was caused by an "auto-stop sensor" on the ride and that no guests were in danger.
"Auto-stopping and resetting of rides is a regular and essential part of operations," the statement said.
"It occurs for a variety of reasons, from sensor alignment to guest behaviour or weather.
"Guests are not placed in danger by auto-stops occurring. They are an essential built-in part of ride safety systems and manufacturer's specifications."
The stoppage occurred about 1pm, and riders were freed within about 30 minutes.