Disney Skyliner shutdown and evacuation - October 6 2019

drizgirl

Well-Known Member
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I'm sincerely shocked people are condemning others for panicking and calling 911 after being stuck in a small suspended space for hours without any news.

How dare they not think about how this impacts disney and they should be arrested for doing it! /sarcasm. Seriously, I expected such ridiculous guest blaming from a "disney can do no wrong" board, not this one.
This is the "gondola can do no wrong" board.
 

MisterPenguin

Rumormonger
Premium Member
There are countless "chicken nugget"-type 911 calls that don't make the news, and happen every single day...I had personally received a countless number of them myself over the years, and my coworkers too. Most of those people actually don't get arrested (not our discretion as operators, but the responding officers who make that decision)...If they arrested every person who overreacts and calls 911 (other than outright "making a false report") every day, there wouldn't be any officers left on the streets by the end of any given shift because they'd all be stuck processing the callers into booking! Those types of calls were almost a welcome "comic relief" among all the actual serious stuff we routinely handled that really did weight heavy...you know, the shootings, stabbings, armed robberies, upside-down child floating blue in a pool, etc...But we weren't allowed, as operators, the discretion to say "Sorry, we're not sending anyone for ('chicken nuggets')"...because it only takes one "refusal of service" on our part and a subsequent escalation at the scene to be in a world of hurt from lawsuits, personal liability, etc. And most of the time, if it's already a 911 call over "chicken nuggets", the scene is already "less than cordial" to the point of being an escalating disturbance which prevents a transfer to the non-emergency line from being appropriate.

I understand that the layperson may want to give people the benefit of the doubt that they will seek and use an alternative form of service request before calling 911...But I learned in probably the first month on that job that countless people just don't care about saving the 911 system for real emergencies. And again, with regard to the Skyliner, it only takes one.
I would like some chicken nuggets. I'll send you a PM where I live...
 

Lirael

Well-Known Member
This is the "gondola can do no wrong" board.
Can do not wrong... except for the lack of AC I guess. :angelic:

While people ended up being stuck for hours, the initial calls to 911 rolled in after less than a half hour.
Still. A half hour wait for something you expected to take 10 minutes while moving, considering they had no communication, is not a failure of the guests. People have anxiety, people have panic attacks. Maybe both of those aren't triggered by moving around slowly on a gondola, but would happen when stuck without any inkling that disney gives a damn or instructions on what to do in an emergency, like a disney SOS line number placed on the gondola.

This was a disney failure. Not just because the gondola stopped for too long (stuff happens, I know) but also (and for me, worse) because of their lack of communication. The guests should not be blamed for panicking, in this scenario
 

peter11435

Well-Known Member
Can do not wrong... except for the lack of AC I guess. :angelic:



Still. A half hour wait for something you expected to take 10 minutes while moving, considering they had no communication, is not a failure of the guests. People have anxiety, people have panic attacks. Maybe both of those aren't triggered by moving around slowly on a gondola, but would happen when stuck without any inkling that disney gives a damn or instructions on what to do in an emergency, like a disney SOS line number placed on the gondola.

This was a disney failure. Not just because the gondola stopped for too long (stuff happens, I know) but also (and for me, worse) because of their lack of communication. The guests should not be blamed for panicking, in this scenario
I’m not disagreeing with anything in your post. This was absolutely Disney’s problem and they need to do better. But that doesn’t mean we shouldn’t be accurate in our discussion of what happened.
 

Lirael

Well-Known Member
I’m not disagreeing with anything in your post. This was absolutely Disney’s problem and they need to do better. But that doesn’t mean we shouldn’t be accurate in our discussion of what happened.
Agree with the accuracy. I mentioned hours initially because I confused the timeline
 

Phil12

Well-Known Member
Would you do the same if you were stuck in traffic for 3 hours unable to leave your car?
I have lived all over the USA from Washington D.C. to Philadelphia, New York, Chicago, Miami, Los Angles, Homestead, FL and a few other places. I have never been stuck in traffic for three hours. There's this thing called alternate routes and u-turns. I plan ahead. Even during many hurricane evacuations in Florida I know how and when to avoid traffic jams.

And I've never been stuck for any significant time on any of the mass transit systems in any and all of the cities in which I have worked and/or lived. But, as an example, if I were trapped for three hours on the PATCO Speedline in Jersey, you can be sure 911 would hear from me. I'd be crazy not to call. However, I'm sure that other passengers would call within 20 minutes of a stoppage on the high speed line. Same is true for the Chicago L.

Mass transit systems are not supposed to stop for extended periods. When they do it's a signal that something is wrong. It is then the responsibility of the operator to inform the passengers as to the nature and expected time of the delay. Automated announcements do not help. A real live person needs to explain to the passengers what is causing the delay and give an estimated time (or exact time if they know) for the resumption of normal service. Anything less prompts people to seek help elsewhere.

As I'm sure you know, afternoon thunderstorms are routine for WDW. While the storms are generally short in duration, they can be very intense and bring high winds. Being in a gondola during a thunderstorm sounds like an up-charge event to me but being stranded without cupcakes is not going to sell well.
 

allgiggles

Well-Known Member
I have lived all over the USA from Washington D.C. to Philadelphia, New York, Chicago, Miami, Los Angles, Homestead, FL and a few other places. I have never been stuck in traffic for three hours. There's this thing called alternate routes and u-turns. I plan ahead. Even during many hurricane evacuations in Florida I know how and when to avoid traffic jams.

And I've never been stuck for any significant time on any of the mass transit systems in any and all of the cities in which I have worked and/or lived. But, as an example, if I were trapped for three hours on the PATCO Speedline in Jersey, you can be sure 911 would hear from me. I'd be crazy not to call. However, I'm sure that other passengers would call within 20 minutes of a stoppage on the high speed line. Same is true for the Chicago L.

Mass transit systems are not supposed to stop for extended periods. When they do it's a signal that something is wrong. It is then the responsibility of the operator to inform the passengers as to the nature and expected time of the delay. Automated announcements do not help. A real live person needs to explain to the passengers what is causing the delay and give an estimated time (or exact time if they know) for the resumption of normal service. Anything less prompts people to seek help elsewhere.

As I'm sure you know, afternoon thunderstorms are routine for WDW. While the storms are generally short in duration, they can be very intense and bring high winds. Being in a gondola during a thunderstorm sounds like an up-charge event to me but being stranded without cupcakes is not going to sell well.
What do you do when an accident happens a short distance in front of you and you don't have any way to exit the highway and take an alternate route? A few years ago we were on I-4, less than 45 minutes from Disney. An accident happened about 1/3 mile in front of us. While we couldn't see the actual accident happen, we could see debris flying. The accident happened about 200 yards in front of an off ramp and with multiple vehicles involved, it blocked all lanes and the debris field was tight against the guard rails. We sat there for almost 2 hours -- there was no way to get out of the jam. We had to wait for the emergency crews to evaluate and transport victims and then move the cars to the side and allow traffic to move again. And with less than 1/4 tank of gas (we were actually planning to get off at the next exit to fill up), running the car and a/c for the entire wait (since we didn't now how long it would be) wasn't an option. It was June. It was hot. We survived. And believe me, after a 16 hour drive and getting *that* close to Disney only to be stuck for an indefinite amount of time it felt like torture. Kids weren't happy. Adults weren't happy. But there was nothing to do but wait. Another trip, there was a huge accident on I-95 in VA (I think there were 10 or 12 fatalities). We were able to route around that but both directions of a stretch of I-95 in VA were closed for over 8 hours (according to the reports on CNN and other news outlets). While we (and thousands of other cars) routed around that mess, there were reports of cars being stuck for several hours until they could slowly clear the lanes and have non-tractor trailer traffic turn around and return to the last exit. So while *you* might never have been stuck in a traffic jam for 3 hours, many people have been stuck through no fault of their own. You can't always plan an alternate route...unless you've got some magic crystal ball that tells you what's going to happen in the future.
 

Goofyernmost

Well-Known Member
Perhaps the defense comes from the fact that Disney didn't intentionally stop the Gondola's to see how long it would take before people started to break the window out of them, jump out and head for the office with pitchforks in hand. I will agree that since they did have a way of communicating promotional stuff into the cabins they should have a way of having someone simply say. We had a mechanical problem with one of the Gondola's that we are working to resolve, no one is in any danger, but we also don't know exactly how long it will take to fix it, but, it shouldn't take long if everyone just relaxes and doesn't panic. We do apologize for the delay, discomfort and interruption of your visit. We should be moving again very soon.

I think something like that would have prevented any 911 calls and eased everyone's mind. If it took longer then they should continue to give an update. It is the lack of communication that caused all the problems. I sincerely hope that Disney was able to learn something from this unfortunate, unexpected event. People will panic when they don't have anyway of knowing what is happening.
 

mergatroid

Well-Known Member
I have lived all over the USA from Washington D.C. to Philadelphia, New York, Chicago, Miami, Los Angles, Homestead, FL and a few other places. I have never been stuck in traffic for three hours. There's this thing called alternate routes and u-turns. I plan ahead. Even during many hurricane evacuations in Florida I know how and when to avoid traffic jams.

And I've never been stuck for any significant time on any of the mass transit systems in any and all of the cities in which I have worked and/or lived. But, as an example, if I were trapped for three hours on the PATCO Speedline in Jersey, you can be sure 911 would hear from me. I'd be crazy not to call. However, I'm sure that other passengers would call within 20 minutes of a stoppage on the high speed line. Same is true for the Chicago L.

Mass transit systems are not supposed to stop for extended periods. When they do it's a signal that something is wrong. It is then the responsibility of the operator to inform the passengers as to the nature and expected time of the delay. Automated announcements do not help. A real live person needs to explain to the passengers what is causing the delay and give an estimated time (or exact time if they know) for the resumption of normal service. Anything less prompts people to seek help elsewhere.

As I'm sure you know, afternoon thunderstorms are routine for WDW. While the storms are generally short in duration, they can be very intense and bring high winds. Being in a gondola during a thunderstorm sounds like an up-charge event to me but being stranded without cupcakes is not going to sell well.
Thanks for replying. Personally when I was stuck in traffic for 4 hours (in snow, unable to move) I didn't feel the need to call the emergency services as a jammed road meant that the authorities knew about it and some plan of action must be in place. I kind of worked on the basis that something had happened and me knowing what it was didn't really make that much difference to my predicament. Of course if I had a medical condition or required medication every so many hours etc, then that information would be far more important. That's in a way why I didn't call as I thought that those actually needing help could be delayed by me adding to the problem by ringing the emergency services.
 

Lilofan

Well-Known Member
I have lived all over the USA from Washington D.C. to Philadelphia, New York, Chicago, Miami, Los Angles, Homestead, FL and a few other places. I have never been stuck in traffic for three hours. There's this thing called alternate routes and u-turns. I plan ahead. Even during many hurricane evacuations in Florida I know how and when to avoid traffic jams.

And I've never been stuck for any significant time on any of the mass transit systems in any and all of the cities in which I have worked and/or lived. But, as an example, if I were trapped for three hours on the PATCO Speedline in Jersey, you can be sure 911 would hear from me. I'd be crazy not to call. However, I'm sure that other passengers would call within 20 minutes of a stoppage on the high speed line. Same is true for the Chicago L.

Mass transit systems are not supposed to stop for extended periods. When they do it's a signal that something is wrong. It is then the responsibility of the operator to inform the passengers as to the nature and expected time of the delay. Automated announcements do not help. A real live person needs to explain to the passengers what is causing the delay and give an estimated time (or exact time if they know) for the resumption of normal service. Anything less prompts people to seek help elsewhere.

As I'm sure you know, afternoon thunderstorms are routine for WDW. While the storms are generally short in duration, they can be very intense and bring high winds. Being in a gondola during a thunderstorm sounds like an up-charge event to me but being stranded without cupcakes is not going to sell well.
Looks like you have never lived through a monster snow storm and stranded for hours on the interstate.
 

Incomudro

Well-Known Member
Can do not wrong... except for the lack of AC I guess. :angelic:



Still. A half hour wait for something you expected to take 10 minutes while moving, considering they had no communication, is not a failure of the guests. People have anxiety, people have panic attacks. Maybe both of those aren't triggered by moving around slowly on a gondola, but would happen when stuck without any inkling that disney gives a damn or instructions on what to do in an emergency, like a disney SOS line number placed on the gondola.

This was a disney failure. Not just because the gondola stopped for too long (stuff happens, I know) but also (and for me, worse) because of their lack of communication. The guests should not be blamed for panicking, in this scenario
Kind of have to agree.
I'm not the type to panic, matter of fact I've got little tolerance for those that do panic.
And I'd really not want to be in a gondola with anyone who was panicking - that's pure hell.
But people do panic, and yeah - a half hour time span of not moving and no live communication about one's situation certainly sounds like a long enough time span for some people to start to lose it.
 

Incomudro

Well-Known Member
What do you do when an accident happens a short distance in front of you and you don't have any way to exit the highway and take an alternate route? A few years ago we were on I-4, less than 45 minutes from Disney. An accident happened about 1/3 mile in front of us. While we couldn't see the actual accident happen, we could see debris flying. The accident happened about 200 yards in front of an off ramp and with multiple vehicles involved, it blocked all lanes and the debris field was tight against the guard rails. We sat there for almost 2 hours -- there was no way to get out of the jam. We had to wait for the emergency crews to evaluate and transport victims and then move the cars to the side and allow traffic to move again. And with less than 1/4 tank of gas (we were actually planning to get off at the next exit to fill up), running the car and a/c for the entire wait (since we didn't now how long it would be) wasn't an option. It was June. It was hot. We survived. And believe me, after a 16 hour drive and getting *that* close to Disney only to be stuck for an indefinite amount of time it felt like torture. Kids weren't happy. Adults weren't happy. But there was nothing to do but wait. Another trip, there was a huge accident on I-95 in VA (I think there were 10 or 12 fatalities). We were able to route around that but both directions of a stretch of I-95 in VA were closed for over 8 hours (according to the reports on CNN and other news outlets). While we (and thousands of other cars) routed around that mess, there were reports of cars being stuck for several hours until they could slowly clear the lanes and have non-tractor trailer traffic turn around and return to the last exit. So while *you* might never have been stuck in a traffic jam for 3 hours, many people have been stuck through no fault of their own. You can't always plan an alternate route...unless you've got some magic crystal ball that tells you what's going to happen in the future.
Poor equivalency.
You can exit your car.
Step out on the ground, look around.
 

allgiggles

Well-Known Member
Poor equivalency.
You can exit your car.
Step out on the ground, look around.
That wasn't the point. The OP said they had never been stuck in a 3-hour traffic jam because they plan ahead, reroute, make a u-turn, etc. I was simply stating that it isn't always possible to plan ahead or reroute depending on the circumstances and that many, many people have been stuck in traffic that they can't avoid. I wasn't comparing being stuck on the Skyliner to being stuck in traffic. Sorry I wasn't more clear.
 

Heppenheimer

Well-Known Member
Perhaps some Canadians (or at least, Ontarions) can confirm this, but it's my understanding that if there is a traffic fatality, the road closes while the police conduct the investigation. Knowing how bad traffic is on a good day on the 401, Gardiner or QEW, I can imagine that a fatal road accident could keep people stuck in their cars for hours.

Anyone who has lived in Germany knows the joy of the sudden Stau on the Autobahn network. Traffic comes to a screeching halt, and sometimes doesn't move for an hour or two. Do people flip out and start calling ADAC or the Polizei? No, they act like adults and assume that there's a good reason why traffic stopped. Sometimes they even get out of their car to stretch their legs. If my dog was with me, I would put her on the leash and let her walk a little.
 

Calmdownnow

Well-Known Member
Looks like you have never lived through a monster snow storm and stranded for hours on the interstate.
Forgive me if I'm wrong. but my understanding is that in such circumstances, emergency services are providing regular up-dates to local radio station for broadcast, sending their own social media updates, and generally doing everything they can to reassure people through pro-active messaging. The issue here is whether WDW followed the best practice adopted by others (e.g. those entities charged with preserving public safety) and it seems as if they may not have followed best practice. As a result, they may have compromised the effectiveness of their emergency response.
 

KrzyKtty

Well-Known Member
Forgive me if I'm wrong. but my understanding is that in such circumstances, emergency services are providing regular up-dates to local radio station for broadcast, sending their own social media updates, and generally doing everything they can to reassure people through pro-active messaging. The issue here is whether WDW followed the best practice adopted by others (e.g. those entities charged with preserving public safety) and it seems as if they may not have followed best practice. As a result, they may have compromised the effectiveness of their emergency response.
You obviously weren't in Atlanta when thousands were stranded on the I during their "snow storm" lol. Emergency services were just as helpless as everyone else...

I'm not sure there was a whole lot that Disney could have done to negate people freaking out once it happened. Not that the approach they did take was really that great, but I am not sure that telling people hanging 60ft off of the line that there was a crash would have alleviated stress lol.

Granted telling them that while there was not timeline for the resolution, but that it was being actively worked on as soon as possible would have helped at least.
 
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larryz

Gold Star Duck
Premium Member
I'm sincerely shocked people are condemning others for panicking and calling 911 after being stuck in a small suspended space for hours without any news.

How dare they not think about how this impacts disney and they should be arrested for doing it! /sarcasm. Seriously, I expected such ridiculous guest blaming from a "disney can do no wrong" board, not this one.
This is not a "Disney" issue. It's a limited response emergency system issue. As long as your gondola is not on fire, the cable isn't unraveling, nobody's having a life-threatening emergency or a baby, there's no reason to call 9-1-1 from a stopped gondola.
 

GoofGoof

Premium Member
I don't know if they were punishing Disney so much as they felt dire in the situation, and that feeling came from non-communication. It was if their situation didn't matter, and thus, they didn't matter, for they got no information that anyone was doing anything to alieve the situation. I'm not justifying calling 911, but perhaps mentally the passengers felt distraught enough to go there. They had no control of their lot, and that may have been their way of finding some control in it.

I was coming home on the highway with a new four year old dog, and had a tire blow out, and had to wait four hours for the AAA truck. (I blame myself, really, I should have checked the condition of the spare before I left to pick him up.) It wasn't myself or that man I married that I was upset about, it was a black hairy dog that needed a haircut on a 90degree day. We seemed to be stuck on the one part of the road where it was impossible to walk to a quicky mart to get water. A one hour drive extended to 6 hours. I wasn't prepared for a six hour drive- I didn't have bottled water and a drinking receptacle for my dog.

A lot of the calls could have been simply the panic of the unknown, not shaking their fist at the park that left them there dangling. I think of my highway scenerio when envisioning what happened in the Skyliner. We did call triple AAA a few times, but didn't find out what took so long until the driver showed up. After we found out that AAA has a screwed up new system to send help, we were fine.
All Disney had to do was put a human face/voice to their park and have a human explain what was going on. "We're working on it" comes across better than cricket silence.
I didn’t mean to imply that the guests who called 911 were trying to punish Disney. Other people here were suggesting that if it happens again people should call 911.

I understand that the layperson may want to give people the benefit of the doubt that they will seek and use an alternative form of service request before calling 911...But I learned in probably the first month on that job that countless people just don't care about saving the 911 system for real emergencies. And again, with regard to the Skyliner, it only takes one.
So they should ban cell phones? What if someone has a real emergency?
I'm sincerely shocked people are condemning others for panicking and calling 911 after being stuck in a small suspended space for hours without any news.

How dare they not think about how this impacts disney and they should be arrested for doing it! /sarcasm. Seriously, I expected such ridiculous guest blaming from a "disney can do no wrong" board, not this one.
I can’t speak for others, but I wasn’t condemning the guests who were stuck for calling 911. I was condemning the person who was saying future guests should light up 911 when the gondolas stop. I get there’s some serious anti-Disney sentiment out there and on these boards in particular but nobody should be advocating using the 911 system as a way to get at Disney for poor planning or poor service.
 

Phil12

Well-Known Member
Looks like you have never lived through a monster snow storm and stranded for hours on the interstate.
Actually I have lived through monster snow storms. But I've always monitored the weather service and made sure not to go out in that sort of bad weather until such time as the plows and salt/sand trucks have made their rounds to clear the roads for safe travel.
 
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