Sussex

Brighton i360 tower attraction closed for second day

View of i360 tower in Brighton
Image caption The i360 tower was made by the same people behind the popular London Eye attraction

Brighton's high-profile i360 attraction was closed for a second day so engineers can carry out safety checks.

It comes after the observation pod broke down three times in five days. About 200 people were stuck for more than an hour at ground level.

British Airways, which runs the attraction, apologised and said those who had made bookings would be offered a refund or a chance to rebook.

It said the incidents happened after automatic brakes were triggered.

A spokeswoman said a load imbalance led to a breakdown on Thursday.

She said: "When the pod was near full capacity this triggered the default safety mode and the brakes were automatically applied."

Further problems occurred on Sunday when one of the sensors around the pod docking stations at ground level became loose, she said.

She said a false reading sent to the control system put the pod once more into safety mode by activating the brakes.

"We have a highly qualified engineering team on site during all operating hours and we are confident that these same issues will not happen again," she said.

And she said final checks would be run on Tuesday night and an announcement would be made on Wednesday morning about plans for reopening.

She said: "We would like to assure our customers that their safety and comfort is our number one priority and apologise again for any inconvenience caused."

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Media captionSome of those turned away among those stuck on Sunday

'Technical hitch'

In one incident, visitors were trapped in the viewing pod for two hours - with no proper toilet facilities.

And 180 passengers were left stuck in mid-air for two hours on Thursday evening.

The i360 pod was carrying a private party, including a heavily pregnant woman, who boarded the pod at about 17:00 BST.

The tower - branded the world's thinnest tall building - offers views of up to 26 miles of Sussex coastline and opened on 4 August.

The 531ft (161m) viewing tower stands on the site once occupied by the entrance to Brighton's ruined West Pier.

Visitors ascend 450ft (137m) in a 360-degree curved-glass pod.

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