Seattle Monorail loses power, briefly trapping passengers on board

SEATTLE — Fire department crews had to rescue passengers from the Seattle Center Monorail on Monday morning after it lost power.

The Seattle Fire Department responded after receiving reports about the incident at 8:30 a.m.

Anyone passing by the tracks near Fifth Avenue and Stewart Street in Downtown Seattle was able to see the train stuck on the tracks perched above the street. At least one door was open where Seattle firefighters mounted the rescue effort.

Firefighters helped the five passengers on board down from the elevated track using ladder trucks.

No injuries were reported.

Sharon Sherpa was in a store near the intersection where the monorail became stuck. She said she saw some of the action by emergency responders and admitted that the idea of getting stuck inside sparked some fear in her mind, and she referenced several movies featuring disasters on trains.

“I was like, ‘OMG I would totally be like Nicolas Cage and break all the windows and tell people to evacuate!’ I’ve been a flight attendant in Nepal so my job would be to save — I would fight the glass, everything,” said Sherpa. “I was watching it through the Bartell Drugs (store) and I came out and I was like, ‘Oh God, what happened?’”

A 9:25 a.m. tweet from @SeattleMonorail said the monorail was “currently out of service due to an electrical issue.”

It resumed service just before 5:30 p.m. Monday.

In March 2021, when the monorail was celebrating its 60th anniversary, everyone on board heard a loud pop — a sound that officials said was caused by a mechanical issue.

The train was forced to stop and passengers were moved to another train.