PITTSBURGH (KDKA) — About 40 people got stuck on the Duquesne Incline for more than an hour Thursday afternoon.
The incline suffered a mechanical failure to its circuit board around 3 p.m., leaving the cars stranded in the middle of the track.
Because the incline operates like a pulley system, they had to call in elevator repair workers to make the fix.
Jenn Sibiga and her family were among about 20 people in one of the cars.
“When we got about halfway, not even halfway, it just stopped abruptly, and then we sat and we sat and we sat and it was quite a while that we sat,” Sibiga said.
After about an hour, someone in the car called 911 for help. They were told repairmen were working on the issue, but they didn’t know when the incline would start moving again.
“We sat and sat and sat some more, and we are the ones that had to do the calling to them, and then eventually they stopped answering our phone calls, so we called the fire department and they said that if they couldn’t get it moving, that they were going to have to use the fire department to rescue us,” Sibiga said.
Sibiga said the car began to heat up while they were waiting for help.
“It was super hot. I mean, the sun, you know, as it’s been going down, has just been beating into the side of the car. And there’s only two, like, little grates on each side that were letting in air. The windows don’t open,” she said.
Just as everyone on the car was settling in for a few more uncomfortable hours, there was movement.
“Kind of without warning, it just, we just lurched down a couple times. It was like somebody was, like, cranking it up at the top, and we stopped several times on the way down. And almost two hours later, we’re finally back on solid ground,” Sibiga said.
Police say the passengers were thirsty and hot, but OK when they got off the cars around 5 p.m.
The Duquesne Incline was back up and running around 7 p.m. Thursday.