Page last updated at 16:52 GMT, Tuesday, 23 December 2008

Dozens trapped on Singapore wheel


The operation to rescue those trapped on the wheel

More than 100 people were trapped for several hours after the world's largest observation wheel, the Singapore Flyer, suffered a breakdown.

The wheel ground to a halt just before 1700 (0900 GMT), when one of the drive motors experienced a short circuit, a spokeswoman told AFP news agency.

About 173 people were on board at the time. Some were later lowered to the ground in harnesses, witnesses said.

The wheel restarted just after 2300, six hours after it stopped, AFP said.

The wheel is 165m (541ft) high and looks out over Singapore's Marina Bay. It is 30m taller than Britain's London Eye.

Singapore Flyer (file pic)
The wheel stands 30m taller than Britain's London Eye

One passenger who had been trapped for several hours told Channel News Asia that the wheel jerked and then ground to a halt.

About 10 people were in her cabin, she told the channel. It had been very hot when the air-conditioning went off but then it came on again, she said.

The wheel became operational in February, and a ride in it takes about 30 minutes.

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