Horror moment children trapped 100ft in the air after carnival ride malfunctions

Emergency services have rescued two children that were trapped 115ft in the air on a carnival ride after its gear box malfunctioned.

Police and fire crews rushed to the scene of the Chants Summer Carnival in Geelong, near Melbourne, Australia on around 2pm local time on Saturday.

Two youngsters were suspended mid-air and two more were trapped closer to the ground when the Freestyle ride broke down at the Waurn Ponds Shopping Centre.

A crane and a cherry picker were used in the daring, three-house rescue effort of the children trapped in mid-air, rescue teams said.

Video footage showed the two children suspended helplessly in the air while two further down were able to be rescued.

And dramatic photographs captured the moment rescue crews used a platform which was raised up to free the children.

Organisers said the malfunction was caused by a faulty gearbox which will be replaced before the ride can re-open.

A spokesman for Fire Rescue Victoria said: “The two children suspended 35m in the air were safely returned to the ground at 4.30pm.

“The remaining two children who were suspended several metres in the air though significantly closer to ground level were freed at 4.53pm and 5.06pm respectively.

“Crews have raised a Ladder Platform to the children and are working to safely free the uninjured pair.

“FRV will remain on scene for some time.”

Paramedics assessed the children at the scene where all four were unharmed.

Carnival goers watched the rescue unfold from the carpark after they were evacuated.

The Freestyle swings rotate in circles at a high speed, launching thrill-seekers high into the air.

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The carnival has been shut down for the rest of the day and will re-open tomorrow, event organisers said.

In a statement posted to its official Facebook page, Chants Summer Carnival said: “Due to today’s incident regarding the gearbox on the 'Freestyle' ride, the Waurn Ponds Carnival will be closed for tonight.

“The ride is currently being dismantled and taken away to have its gearbox replaced. Maintenance and safety of all our machines are our main priority at all times.

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“We would like to thank the families involved, emergency services and Worksafe, for their immediate assistance, patience and understanding throughout today.

“It is unfortunate that this has happened, but rest assured all steps will be taken to re-open safely.

“Please do not hesitate to contact us if you have any questions.

“We look forward to welcoming everyone back from tomorrow.”

WorkSafe Victoria, the state’s health and safety authority, has launched a probe into the cause of the breakdown.

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