Riders left hanging in mid-air on 72ft rollercoaster after breakdown at Adventure Island theme park

Credit: Nicola Biney
The Rage rollercoaster at Southend broke down just after 2pm on Friday. Credit: Nicola Biney

A group of people were left hanging vertically on the tracks of a 72-foot high rollercoaster in Essex after it broke down.

Videos on social media showed riders of Rage at theme park Adventure Island, in Southend, stuck at a near 90-degree angle facing the sky on Friday afternoon.

Footage filmed by a bystander showed the car almost at the peak of the rollercoaster, as people looked on.

However, according to the park, passengers of the carriage were evacuated and safely returned to the ground within 40 minutes.

Rage is advertised as Adventure Island's "biggest and best" rollercoaster with "loops, twists, and flat-out speeds".

Only people over 120cm can ride it.

Marc Miller, managing director of the Stockvale Group - which runs Adventure Island, said: "Just after 2pm today, a carriage on Rage stopped on the lift. Our highly trained team immediately initiated our ride evacuation plan, which has been certified by the Health and Safety Executives and Essex Fire and Rescue."

"All passengers were returned to the ground, safe and sound and reunited with their families within 40 minutes."

Want a quick and expert briefing on the biggest news stories? Listen to our latest podcasts to find out What You Need To Know