PITTSBURGH (KDKA) – There was lots of excitement leading up to the giant slip and slide event in South Park this weekend.
Thousands of people busted out their bathing suits and grabbed a bright-colored inflatable raft to slide down the 1,000-foot slide.
The event was sold out for most of the weekend. Organizers say the first day sold out within 48 hours of tickets going online.
About 5,000 people took part Saturday and another 4,000 on Sunday.
However, it wasn’t all fun and games for everyone.
Some people took to the “Slide the City Pittsburgh” Facebook page to lodge complaints with the event.
Some said they had to wait well over one hour – even up to three hours to go down the slide. This was particularly an issue for people who paid at least $30 to ride the slip and slide three times or $50 for unlimited rides.
Some people said they weren’t able to go down as many times as they paid for because of the long waits.
Kaysie Davis wrote on the Facebook page, “2 hours for each wait. We got to go twice. Total.”
Others complained about the safety of the slide. Joel Lebiere and Alexis Neidhardt said people were getting hurt, because it was too hard to stop coming down the slide.
“So you had no control of stopping, they told you to jump off at last second and go crashing into people holding intertubes at the end of the line,” said Lebiere.
Neidhardt added “They would scream at us half-way down the slide to start slowing down, but there was not way to slow down. I know of one person who lost four teeth because she was hit so hard, others had head injuries.”
Lebiere added that several volunteers were also hurt, trying to stop water slide riders at the bottom of the hill. He said they had to be taken to the hospital.
The couple says at one point, the slide was shut down for about a half hour on Saturday, while volunteers tried to figure out how to make it safer.
Organizers say they worked with city officials and city council, as well as state regulators, before the event to ensure everyone’s safety.
“We have a whole army of folks to help people get out of the slide when they’re done,” said Ryan Johnson, co-owner of Slide The City.
Johnson also said a lot work went into the construction of the slide to make sure riders don’t go down to fast or too slow, as well as regulate the flow of water.