While nothing can hold a candle to classic rides like Space Mountain or Tower of Terror, Pirates of the Caribbean is still one of the most sought-after attractions at Disney Parks. So when one recent park-goer discovered their boat was sinking during the popular ride, they couldn’t believe what they were seeing.
A man named Justin (@JustnJames_) was visiting Disneyland in Anaheim, Calif. when chaos struck earlier this month. In his now-viral TikTok, the Disney fan shows how the mechanical boat he was traveling in suddenly started taking in water, forcing the ride to shut down before passengers were escorted to safety.
“POV: You’re stuck on the pirates ride @ Disneyland and your boat is literally sinking,” the video caption reads, along with images of the boat filling up with water.
After about an hour of waiting, Justin says the Disney Fire Department finally showed up to evacuate those who’d been stranded. But while the TikToker appears to be grateful for the rescue, he ultimately said the whole experience was giving major “Six Flags energy.” (Presumably, he’s referring to the other amusement park’s history of ride malfunctions).
“It was a hot mess,” he confessed in his post caption. “Honestly thought we were gonna swim our way out of this.”
According to Disney, Pirates of the Caribbean has been around for more than 50 years and has remained a fan favorite the entire time.
While the ride was originally imagined in the 1950s as a walk-through adventure with wax figures, it didn’t actually launch until March of 1967. By then, Disney was happy with the success of another new attraction, The Carousel of Progress, and wound up turning Pirates of the Caribbean into a slow-moving water ride with similar audio-animatronics.
Today, the ride still features many of the small drops and dark turns riders have taken for decades as they “cruise through seas plagued by scoundrels” in an underwater cave. However, it’s also been updated to include some newer features, too, such as the likeness of actor Johnny Depp, who was first cast as the infamous Captain Jack Sparrow in 2003.
Since sharing the video in early February, Justin’s TikTok has received more than 2.3 million views and a lot of reactions.
“Oof, I’d hate to be walking around with wet socks in Disney,” one person commented.
Another said their biggest fear was “getting stuck in the huge room with the boats firing at each other.”
Some people weren’t too surprised by the whole ordeal, though.
“I was literally there yesterday and I did feel like the boats were a bit off,” one person wrote. “On the first fall the boat felt like it was going to turn over.”
“I’ve gotten stuck on Pirates a few times when I was a kid (before the remodel in the 2010’s) and I know where several of the emergency exits are,” another commenter shared.
“I got rescued from the haunted mansion by Disney fire department,” someone else added.
A lot of TikTokers couldn’t get over how gross the water was that started to fill the boat — or why Justin felt the need to touch it.
“Not you touching the forbidden water … “ one person wrote.
“You touched the water?” another person asked.
But most of all, commenters couldn’t get over the fact that in order to be rescued from the sinking boat, ride-goers had to walk across a narrow board that was laid out for them.
“full experience of pirates they even made you walk the plank,” one person quipped.
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