Disney Visitors Rescued From Sinking Pirates Boat, See The Shocking Footage

Disney's famed Pirates of the Caribbean ride began to sink with park guests on it and there is video footage.

By Sean Thiessen | Updated

Disney Pirates ride

In the words of Jeff Goldblum in Jurassic Park, “Pirates of the Caribbean breaks down, the pirates don’t eat the tourists.” That may be true, but when the Disney Pirates ride breaks down, it can sink tourists. That’s what happened to TikTok user Justin, and he captured the dramatic Disneyland event on camera.


It was a hot mess. Honestly thought we were gonna swim our way out of this #disneyland #brokenride #piratesofthecaribbean #dca #anaheim #fyp

♬ Disneyland and DCA ride songs – Kelly

The video shows that Justin and others were stuck on the ride for over an hour while their boats filled with water, soaking their feet. The park’s fire department rescued the passengers in a manner that ironically looked a lot like walking the plank. According to Justin, Disney gave riders stuck on the Pirates ride a $30 voucher for new socks and a single Lightning Lane pass.

Commenters on Justin’s post had varying levels of concern, but many were most affected by Justin touching the dirty, “forbidden” water seeping into the boat. Others claimed a conspiracy that Disney purposefully trapped guests on the Pirates ride to relieve traffic in other areas of the park. Justin used the snafu to deride another popular theme park: “It was giving Six Flags energy.”

Disney has made recent headlines for all the wrong reasons. Corporate leadership change late in 2022 led to restructuring and layoffs across the board, and Disney’s parks have steeped in political controversy and outbreaks of violence, all while the company has charged ever-climbing ticket prices. Efforts by Disney to reduce visitor costs and bring fans back to its parks have been undermined by public incidents like the one shared on the Pirates ride.

Pirates of the Caribbean has a reputation for breaking down. Comments on Justin’s TikTok post echoed the experience, while others claimed viewing the event was like watching a nightmare unfold. Despite years of incidents, Disney keeps the Pirates ride sailing along.

johnny depp

That may be because the attraction inspired an epic film franchise. Disney based its 2003 hit Pirates of the Caribbean: The Curse of the Black Pearl on the ride, and that movie sparked a multitude of sequels. The series has set sail with five films, but without Johnny Depp, the franchise is lost at sea.

Disney cut ties with Depp, who starred in all five Pirates films as Captain Jack Sparrow, after abuse allegations were levied against the actor. Now that Depp has won his case in court, Disney wants the anchor of their Pirates franchise to ride the high seas once again. Depp, however, has been adamant about not returning to any project affiliated with Disney after the way the studio treated him before his highly publicized trial.

Without Depp at the helm, Disney has a long list of potential stars on deck to right the ship for one of its biggest properties. Rumors of a Pirates project starring Margot Robbie fizzled out when the project was declared dead in the water. Disney has reportedly explored turning Pirates into a series and could ride the wave of Stranger Things star Maya Hawke’s fame, while other sources have teased the return of original Pirates stars Keira Knightley, Orlando Bloom, and even Johnny Depp.

Declining box office returns and drama with Depp make the Pirates franchise feel like it’s sinking like a boat on the ride that inspired it. But whatever Disney decides to do with Pirates, the action on screen and on the ride is likely not going away any time soon.