July 11, 2011

Six Flags briefly closes Texas Giant for repair

The Texas Giant was put back in service Monday after workers discovered and replaced a worn wheel, park officials said.

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ARLINGTON -- Some roller-coaster riders experienced more downs than ups Sunday afternoon when an operator shut down the Texas Giant after hearing an unusual sound coming from one of the trains.

The temporary shutdown at Six Flags Over Texas, which officials say was done as a safety precaution, occurred shortly after 3 p.m. and left some riders stuck for about 20 minutes on the coaster's summit before being allowed to exit their cars and walk down.

"All of the passengers were safely unloaded," Sharon Parker, a Six Flags spokeswoman, said Monday.

The train was back in service Monday afternoon after maintenance engineers discovered that one of its wheels had become worn and replaced it, Parker said. She said the train was then inspected, tested and cleared for service.

The shutdown was the Texas Giant's second in recent days.

On Friday, a computer error temporarily shut down the ride, causing passengers to be unloaded at the roller coaster's lift.

Parker called it a "coincidence that this happened within the time span that it did."

She said the ride has a complex system of safety checks in place.

"If the system detects anything it perceives as being out of the ordinary, it's going to stop and send notification to the ride operator," she said.

In addition, Parker said ride operators are trained to stop the ride themselves, like in Sunday's case, if they note any potential problems.

"At the end of the day, safety is our No. 1 priority, and we're not going to do anything to jeopardize the safety of our guests or anyone," Parker said.

The Texas Giant reopened in April after being closed for about a year for renovations.

Deanna Boyd, 817-390-7655

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