If you’re taking the kids to Alton Towers this summer holiday, it might be an idea to avoid their new rollercoaster The Smiler – as bits are falling off it.
The much touted £18m ride was closed on Sunday when a metal bar flew off right in front of the alarmed queue. The bolt, which was about a foot long, fell off the track while customers were waiting to get on, causing a flurry of frightened tweeting.
‘The fact a bolt flew out of the track from the Smiler and landed literally two metres away from us in the queue is the scariest thing," said one punter. Another said: ‘I will never set foot on the Smiler now, not after seeing the track actually break.’
The death trap ride is the first rollercoaster in the world with 14 loops, and features drops of up to 60 metres. It also features something horrendous called a Marmaliser, which is shaped like a spider with 5 legs and swings people about at such force that they ‘smile’ – hence the name. In May, it broke down during its press launch, causing 16 people to be evacuated.
Now it’s closed again while Alton Towers investigate, and nobody is smiling. Add that to the awful news of a woman in the US falling to her death at a Six Flags theme park last week and you might want to play it safe for the time being.
Anyone for the tea cup ride?