Here’s why they shut down Ferris wheels on windy days.

Among my many unusual tastes and preferences is the fact that I absolutely love windy days. With gale-force gusts whipping about Japan this week, I’ve started taking work breaks not to have a drink or go to the bathroom, but just to stand on the balcony and feel the wind in my hair for a few moments.

That said, I’m not sure I’d have wanted to be at Ako Seaside Park, located near the Western edge of Hyogo Prefecture, the other day. Sure, it looks like a nice enough place, with flowers, lakes, and a petting zoo. There’s even a 50-meter (164 feet) tall Ferris wheel inside the park, which provides sweeping views of the surrounding area and, like all Ferris wheels in Japan, is popular with little kids and young couples.

So I’m sure there were a lot of disappointed tykes and lovebirds who visited Ako Seaside Park last Tuesday (which was a national holiday in Japan) only to discover the Ferris wheel was shut down for the day due to excessive wind. I’m also sure that none of them were arguing with the decision after they saw this.

As the tallest structure in the area, there was nothing blocking the full strength of the winds from slamming into the Ferris wheel. When they reached the gondolas at the wheel’s summit, they spun them with startling speed, as seen in the video shared by Japanese Twitter user @Kaho_Takuya.

Thankfully, the video also shows that all the cars are empty, and that the Ferris wheel itself was not in operation at the time. Still, this proves that with an assist from Mother Nature, a Ferris wheel can become more terrifying than any purposely designed amusement park thrill ride.

Follow Casey on Twitter, where he sends out tweets when not standing in windy places with a silly smile on his face.

Source: Hamster Sokuho, Twitter/@Kaho_Takuya