Edinburgh’s big wheel closed for a week amid safety fears

The big wheel in Princes Street Gardens.
The big wheel in Princes Street Gardens.

The big wheel in Princes Street Gardens was shut down for a week after it emerged it had been inspected by the same man who gave a safety certificate to the Tsunami rollercoaster at M&D’s Theme Park.

Edinburgh City Council chiefs told ride operators M&D Events to stop the wheel after receiving a warning from the Health and Safety Executive.

It told them that the attraction was inspected by the same man who gave the all-clear to the Strathclyde Park-based ride which derailed in June injuring 10 people.

In its letter, the HSE raised “serious concerns” and told all fairground owners with safety certificates issued by Craig Boswell to reinspect their rides.

The 44-metre Ferris wheel closed last Wednesday and only reopened late yesterday (Wednesday) once fresh checks were carried out.

A spokeswoman for M&D Events said: “Following discussions with Edinburgh City Council, we took the decision to temporarily close the attraction to allow for an additional inspection, carried out by a certified independent expert.

“The Edinburgh Festival Wheel passed the inspection and reopened yesterday for visitors to enjoy.”

A spokeswoman for the city council confirmed that the ride was temporarily closed while “precautionary checks” were carried out.

Jim Orr, independent councillor for Southside/Newington, said: “Safety is of utmost importance, especially given the recent accident in Lanarkshire.”

Following the accident at M&D’s, Boswell removed himself from the Amusement Device Inspection Procedures Scheme register and was subsequently given an HSE ban.