During a visit to the recently-opened Orlando StarFlyer on International Drive, Cansel Yildirim accidentally dropped her iPhone 7 Plus while ascending on the ride, which stands at 450 feet high.
Check out the video of the phone’s drop from the ride below:
Miraculously, the phone was unharmed when it landed in a parking spot by the attraction, after falling from about 400 feet in the air – without a case!
The phone sustained a few scratches on the bottom, but the screen was completely unharmed and, according to Yildirim, “still works completely fine.”
“When it fell, I thought, ‘Oh geez, it’s going to be in a million pieces,’ and I’m from Turkey, so I’d have to get a new one,” said Yildirim. “I was really worried we weren’t going to be able to find it, but we used a friend’s iPhone to track it down through Where’s My iPhone.”
Normally, guests are expected to leave their items in a locker in the ticket office or a bin by their feet before going on the StarFlyer, and there are multiple signs reminding guests to empty their pockets of loose items before going on the ride.
“We’ve trained all our attendants. They’re spieling [to the guests] when we’re grouping them into their rows. We’re spieling that nothing can be loose on them. So no cell phones, no cameras, hats, glasses – everything has to be secured,” said John Kribbs, a manager at the StarFlyer.
Kribbs also explained that the StarFlyer staff visually checks for phones and other loose items during the initial safety check, as well as a second and final check for phones before the ride launches.
“We’ve had this policy in place, and we’ve been enforcing it since day one. Before we even opened, that was something we looked at […] if it was even possible to let someone keep their phone out. The only thing we’re allowing is, anytime you’re seeing a POV that’s on YouTube, if it’s done correctly, it should only be a GoPro that’s with a professional strap.”
In reaction to the video going viral, the Orlando StarFlyer has also added monitors inside the ticket office which show an animated video that reminds guests to take everything out of their pockets and place them in a locker or bin. They’ve also told their staff to start looking for bulges in guests’ pockets.
“We are extremely vigilant to ensure cell phones and loose items are removed before being taken on the ride and will continue to strive to ensure the safety of the guest and employees,” reiterated Orlando StarFlyer General Manager Ritchie Armstrong. “We have even marginally rounded off the purchase price and same day re-rider price to stop giving out coins. We also hope that the guests will use some common sense and not try to hide anything, and assist us to provide a fantastic attraction for Orlando and ensure a world-class experience for everyone.”
We previously covered the Orlando StarFlyer for an episode of “The Attractions Show,” and our reporter Tiffany was recorded on the ride using approved and mounted cameras:
We do not condone the keeping of loose items on the Orlando StarFlyer, or any other ride where it could be a danger to others. Be sure to consult with employees before taking your loose articles on attractions.