Ferris Wheel Breaks Down; 7 People Stuck on Ride

People riding a Ferris wheel in the North Valley got stuck Sunday night after the ride broke down with seven people on it.

The incident happened at a Fourth of July celebration in Livingston, about 15 miles north of Merced.

Firefighters had to help get riders off of the Ferris wheel.

A KMPH viewer had his camera rolling during the rescue.

"It's not every day you help people get off of a Ferris wheel, but it's part of the things that we do," said Jeremy Rahn with the Merced County Fire Department.

Ladder truck 96 and seven Livingston firefighters were called in to help after workers realized it would take a while to get the ride fixed and going again.

"We sent a firefighter up with a harness, and we had the ride goer put on another harness for their safety," Rahn said.

Some riders were stuck 40 feet above ground.

"Just to give you an idea, with the ladder extended it goes about 55 feet.{} We had to reposition it a few different times due to the obstacles in the way to get them," Rahn said.

Fortunately for the riders, the Ferris wheel broke down at about 10 p.m., so they weren't stuck under the blazing hot sun.

It took about an hour and a half for firefighters to get everyone down on the ground.

"Nobody was injured, nobody was panicked, so it was a smooth operation getting them down safely," Rahn said.

Five out of the seven riders that got stuck on the Ferris wheel were carnival workers.

The other two rescued riders were teens from the Livingston area.