An off-site power surge is believed to be the reason the Dallas Zoo’s Monorail Safari electric train stopped today with 48 guests and one driver on board.
The monorail slowed to a halt at 11:37 a.m. about 12 feet off of the ground in the Woodlands habitat. The train is designed to stop with an electrical issue, including a power surge. The zoo’s Guest Services team immediately provided water and snacks to the guests on board while engineers tried to restart the train. When the monorail was unable to be restarted quickly, zoo officials requested assistance from the Dallas Fire Department to carefully remove passengers from the train.
Dallas Fire responded within minutes and helped passengers climb down on ladders. All emergency procedures worked as they were supposed to and all guests were evacuated in a very orderly and safe manner. The Dallas Zoo appreciates the experience and professionalism of the Dallas Fire team, as well as the calm response of our guests aboard the train.
The monorail will remain closed through Friday while the zoo’s engineering team inspects the three trains and the track to ensure that no electrical damage has occurred from the surges, which are common in Texas during hot summer months.
The stoppage occurred under large trees that provide shade over most of the train. The cars were facing the habitat housing the zoo’s new baby eland, which was quite curious about the hubbub and provided the guests with a special view of the calf and her parents.
The popular Monorail Safari is 24 years old and remains a guest favorite, with hundreds of thousands of riders each year. Long-term, the zoo is looking at options for the Wilds of Africa habitat which the Monorail overlooks, which would include replacing the monorail. As a non-profit zoological park, private funding would be required for such a project.