News & Politics

National Harbor’s Ferris Wheel Lost Power While Passengers Were on Board

About 35 people were riding the 180 foot-high attraction.

A spin on the National Harbor’s Capital Wheel took an unexpected and scary turn Thursday evening when the Ferris wheel lost power, stranding about 35 passengers on the ride. At its highest point, the Ferris wheel reaches 180 feet. All patrons were lowered to safety and no injuries have been reported.

The fire department was dispatched at 7:19 PM for “a high angle rescue call,”  referring to a retrieval that requires personnel to climb a rope at an angle between 45 and 90 degrees. However, the technical rescue was not required, says Michael Yourishin, press information officer for the Prince George’s County Fire/EMS department. FEMS workers were on the scene for about an hour, according to Yourishin, but he isn’t sure how long passengers had been stranded prior to their arrival (National Harbor hasn’t responded to our questions about the timespan of the rescue).

The Capital Wheel is back in operation today.


Daniella Byck
Lifestyle Editor

Daniella Byck joined Washingtonian in 2022. She was previously with Outside Magazine and lives in Northeast DC.