A popular theme park attraction gave riders an unexpected thrill over the weekend.
Eight people were left stranded 12 stories high on a Six Flags Over Texas roller coaster during a lightning storm Sunday.
The riders—all students attending a park event just for high school students called "Senior Nite"—were aboard “The Joker” roller coaster when high wind warnings triggered a safety sensor to stop the ride around midnight, according to People.
“My friend and I thought we were going to die, just because there was lightning, and we didn’t think anyone knew we were up there,” Christian Chaney, who was on the ride with a friend, told People reports. “We were holding hands, and we prayed a lot.”
Chaney, along with the other riders, were stuck on the 120-foot-tall ride for over three hours in severe weather, fearful that no one from Six Flags knew they were up there.
“All eight of us were screaming at the top of our lungs, trying to get their attention, trying to get them to say something and we didn't hear from Six Flags, from anyone. No one came over the intercom for at least 25 minutes, maybe even 30,” Chaney told WFAA.
Arlington firefighters were sent to the park around 12:30 a.m. but it took several hours for the rescue team to evacuate all students. Firemen were even forced to cut a hole in the chain-link fence and use a ladder truck to rescue the riders, according to WFAA.
“I don’t know how I did it, honestly,” Chaney told WFAA. “The ladder was rocking up and down from the wind.”
Sharon Parker, Six Flags Over Texas' Communication Manager, said a weather update was communicated just as the ride took off and sensors picked up the strong wind, stopping the ride automatically at a safe location on the track.
After the incident, the park Tweeted out a notice that The Joker underwent a safety inspection before reopening Sunday.
"After a thorough inspection, The Joker is open. Severe headwinds triggered a safety stop overnight. Safety is our highest priority," the park posted.