Waterslides are a common feature on many popular cruise ships, but one woman on Norwegian Encore recently learned that even a slide doesn’t always work as intended, when she accidentally got stuck and had to evacuate the slide through an emergency access door. The woman was not injured and additional guests continued to enjoy the slide.
Woman Gets Stuck on Ocean Loops Slide
According to a viral TikTok video posted by @YMG Travels, the woman was enjoying the ship’s Ocean Loops waterslide, a daring part of Norwegian Encore‘s Aqua Park. The closed-tube slide, which starts with a steep hatch drop as a panel opens underneath the rider’s feet, features two loops that extend out over the ship’s starboard side, 159 feet above the ocean.
The loops are constructed of clear plastic to give riders a thrilling view as they curve over the ocean, and both loops do have brief upward sections that brings riders back over the deck. It was the first, steepest section that the woman failed to complete, not having enough momentum to make the ascent over the crest of the loop.
Instead, the woman slides back and forth for a few moments, before settling at the lowest point of the slide. At that point, the slide features an emergency access door and crew members were on hand to help the woman exit the slide immediately with no problem.
“The lady was not stuck in the waterslide for long,” YMG Travels’ TikTok user, who identifies herself as a travel agent, told Fox News. “There is a side door for the slide and she was out of it immediately. By the time I walked that way, she was out and ready to do the slide again.”
The video has already been viewed nearly 16 million times since it was posted on March 4, and has generated more than 20,000 comments.
In a follow up video posted March 9, YMG Travels explains that this situation happens regularly. When a rider fails to clear the second loop and stops in the slide, an alarm sounds and a safety door opens so the rider can exit within seconds.
More videos of Ocean Loops do show riders getting stuck in both loops, and there are access doors at both low points for safe and easy exits.
Water Slide Requirements
All water slides, whether on cruise ships or land-based parks, have height and weight restrictions for riders. According to Norwegian Cruise Line’s Aqua Park FAQ page, Ocean Loops requires that riders be at least 48″ tall and weigh at least 130 pounds, with a maximum weight of 300 pounds permitted on the slide.
These guidelines are to ensure guests’ safety and comfort on the slide, as well as to ensure the slide operates correctly, but they are not foolproof.
Any number of reasons can cause a rider to fail to complete an uphill water slide element. Friction from the rider’s swimwear or skin, their angle as they reach the loop, the amount of water in the slide, their overall speed, and how they have moved throughout the ride, such as slipping from side to side or rotating slightly, can all impact how successfully a rider completes the slide.
These types of incidents are relatively common and are not an indication of poor design, maintenance, or operation. The crew working the water slide is trained to react swiftly when a rider fails to complete the loop, and the safety door is positioned for easy access and egress so the slide can continue to operate for other riders.
Even the same rider may sometimes get “stuck” on a water slide, yet have a fun and successful ride the next time they try the slide. While some riders may be apprehensive about not completing the ride, other riders can see it as an exciting thrill to be one of the guests to slide backwards.
Ocean Loops was first introduced on the Breakaway-plus class Norwegian Joy, and in addition to Norwegian Encore, is also found on Norwegian Bliss.