Oregon Teen Feared She Was 'Going To Die' While Stuck On Stalled Amusement Park Ride

Several of the 28 people who were left dangling upside down for more than 20 minutes when a thrill ride at Oregon’s Oaks Amusement Park malfunctioned are opening up about their experience.

In an interview with People published Tuesday, Jordan Harding said she and her boyfriend, Daniel Allen, feel “lucky to be alive” after being rescued off the AtmosFEAR ride by emergency crews last week.

“After about 15 seconds of being upside down, I realized we were stuck,” Harding, 18, told the publication. “I thought we were going to die there. My boyfriend was scared too.”

Watch a report on the Oaks Amusement Park incident from Fox affiliate KPTV below.

“I remember thinking that I was going to die like that and miss out on so many major things that I had hoped to experience,” she added.

Many of the AtmosFEAR’s riders were younger than she was, she said, due to an eighth-grade celebration taking place at the park that day.

Another rider, Hazen Hathorne, told KPTV he heard “screaming, crying, pleas for help” while aboard the stalled AtmosFEAR.

“Gravity was pulling me down, but the seat was keeping me in,” he said. “So everything was pressuring me against the harness that was coming over me.” Blood vessels broke in his face while he was upside down, he said, leaving his cheeks with red freckle-like dots.

Portland fire crews arrived at Oaks Amusement Park at around 3:20 p.m. Friday after the AtmosFEAR stalled at what’s been described as its “apex position,” with 28 riders stranded upside-down about 50 feet in the air. Park officials said the ride was returned safely to the ground minutes later, and that none of the riders sustained significant injuries.

Billed by Oaks Amusement Park as a “showstopping extreme attraction,” the AtmosFEAR swings like a pendulum before twirling riders completely upside-down. Other versions of the ride, which opened at Oaks in 2021, can be found at other theme parks and traveling fairs across the U.S.

As of Tuesday afternoon, Oaks Amusement Park’s website listed the AtmosFEAR as being closed indefinitely, while a park spokesperson told People that an investigation into the incident was “in its beginning stages.”