Health Warnings Emerge for Universal’s ‘Harry Potter’ Coaster, Guests Refuse to Ride

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Hagrid’s Magical Creatures Motorbike Adventure in action

Credit: Universal

Things are getting hot in Orlando, Florida, right now, but not all theme park guests are taking the sun seriously, which is resulting in some serious health concerns.

A picturesque view of a fairy tale Cinderella Castle with spires, under a clear blue sky with the sun setting behind, casting a warm glow over the scene at Walt Disney World Resort.
Credit: Disney

While central Florida’s lack of snow and generally affordable land initially made Orlando an attractive location for Walt Disney World, the region does present its own set of climatic challenges.

One significant factor is frequent rainfall, particularly during the summer months. To address this, Disney World boasts many indoor attractions and covered queues, ensuring year-round enjoyment. Examples include Pirates of the Caribbean, Haunted Mansion, Space Mountain, “it’s a small world,” Peter Pan’s Flight, and many more.

The same goes for Universal Orlando Resort, which is just minutes down the I-4 highway.

However, the sunshine that makes Florida a popular destination can also pose a challenge in the form of high temperatures. Unfortunately, recent summers have seen an increase in heatstroke and other heat-related illnesses among park guests, as reported by Inside the Magic.

With temperatures regularly exceeding 90 degrees Fahrenheit, heat index values reaching 110, and high humidity, park officials have implemented additional measures to combat the heat. Guests are encouraged to prioritize hydration, seek refuge in air-conditioned spaces when necessary, stay out of direct sunlight, and wear and re-apply broad-spectrum sunscreen with an SPF of 30 or higher.

The intensity of Florida’s heat can be surprising for visitors accustomed to different climates. It’s crucial to take precautions seriously and remain hydrated throughout your visit. Many attractions offer indoor spaces to escape the heat and strategically planning your day can help maximize your time in air-conditioned comfort.

Now, last summer’s string of heat strokes is again coming to life, and we have not even hit the summer months yet.

One guest at Universal Orlando Resort who was visiting Islands of Adventure recently reported seeing a woman fall off an attraction after passing out from heat stroke. As others chimed in, it became clear that she was one of many guests who succumbed to the heat.

The post begins, “We were in line at noon waiting to board. The carousel stopped, and everyone got off except this 50(?) yr old woman and the little girl she was with. The woman was slumped over her camel bird’s pole and slow to respond.”

The guest continued, “Team members were immediately on scene and called for medical attention. A woman in line started barking that she was a first responder and could help but TMs refused the offer. Stay hydrated out there, folks!”

Guests walking into Universal Studios Florida
Credit: Universal

Once that post hit Reddit, others who have recently been to Universal spoke up, and Hagrid’s Magical Creatures Motorbike Adventure in the Wizarding World of Harry Potter seemed to be another queue that left guests on the floor.

“Girl passed out in the queue for Hagrid two or three days ago. Ironically right next to one of the water fountains. Pretty much everyone took her as a warning and took a good few sips,” replied one guest.

While Hagrid’s Magical Creatures Motorbike Adventure is an excellent attraction, it is also one of the most popular ones, which lends it to have quite a long line nearly all of the time.

Another guest pointed out that the tight-nature fit of the line likely also makes it tough for guests suffering from heat exhaustion to stay conscious:

“Some areas of the Hagrid’s queue have so little ventilation that I’ve had to leave the line because I thought I was going to throw up or pass out. Mostly that dragon egg room is my worst memory, and feels like a green house. And these were in either February or late October, so I can’t imagine standing in those narrow hallways in the middle of summer.”

Hagrid's Motorboke Rollercoaster Islands of Adventure
Credit: Universal Studios Orlando

Another response to the tight queues came from a guest who actually said that they refused to go on the ride due to the unpleasant wait: “I seriously will not go back on that ride EVER if I have to wait in the queue. I absolutely lost it in the dark, narrow corridors.”

It appears that the smell of the queue is also becoming problematic for guests, as another chimed in, “That dragon egg room STINKS. People were farting up a storm. I can deal with BO somewhat because, hey, we’re all sweaty, and it’s a theme park, but…”

Once the chatter on Hagrid’s began on the post, it did not stop.

Others wondered about the emergency exits or lack thereof and how the ride passed a fire code inspection.

Of course, the ride would have been tested for all safety measures, but that did not stop this response, “My concern with those narrow hallways is that I kept looking for emergency exits and never saw any. There is a good portion of the queue where you’d be unable to exit if there was, for example, a fire or a medical emergency.

This is compounded by the fact that if the line starts panicking and everyone is trying to leave all at once, we know that it ends badly with people hurt. I guess I’m just not sure how that queue even passes fire code”.

Another guest shared that they had to recently leave the line, “I had to exit the queue because I felt faint and dizzy. I reached as far in line where the screens show you how to board the ride.”

Interestingly enough, another fan of the ride, and a fan of Harry Potter explained why the ride is so tight to begin with, in terms of the indoor portion of the queue, “As a Certified Harry Potter Nutcase I can tell you that the structure is meant to be an “Abandoned Ruin” which was ruined “even before Hogwarts was built”.

(I’m not certain the architectural style fits in terms of real-life historical timeline, but whatever.) Students have traditionally used it as a spot for dueling clubs, and of course, Hagrid has cooped it for things like [illegal] breeding of new magical creatures.

Riders on Hagrid's Adventure
Credit: Universal

This was all from some of the press stuff that was released when the ride was made. Thank you for letting me share some useless knowledge. What an awful place to have a medical emergency, though. So far away from the Hospital Wing.”

Overall, the queue for Hagrid’s Magical Creatures Motorbike Adventure may not be the best for those who do not like enclosed spaces. Regardless of that fact, staying properly hydrated is essential to any theme park visit this summer. Guests can always ask for a free cup of water at any quick service location.

Currently, three significant expansions are underway within Universal’s parks and experiences team. Universal’s Epic Universe is set to open in Universal Orlando, Florida, in 2025. Universal Kids Resort will be established in Texas, and Universal Horror Unleashed will offer year-round Halloween Horror Nights experiences in Las Vegas, with a new section of AREA15 being developed.

Additionally, Universal has acquired land in the U.K. for the development of Universal’s Great Britain.

What do you do to deal with the Florida heat when you visit the theme parks?

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