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Fire Breaks Out Near Great America Rollercoaster

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(STMW) – Even though Great America’s hot, new wooden roller coaster has not yet opened to the public, crowds rushed to Goliath on Friday afternoon.

About 2:21 p.m., Gurnee firefighters were called to the theme park for a report of a structural fire next to the Goliath roller coaster, Fire Battalion Chief Jim Pellitteri said.

Flames were already doused when crews arrived because park employees took down the shingles and attempted to extinguish the flames. However, firefighters sprayed more water and foam for about 30 minutes to ensure the fire didn’t reignite.

The fire was contained to a roof structure that covers the roller coaster’s cars, he said. The fire did not impact the roller coaster.

“It was under control by the time we got there,” Pellitteri said. “It was really a low- profile event.”

The cause remains under investigation, he said. There were no injuries.

Since Goliath is still under construction, the roller coaster is already cordoned off from the rest of the park.

On May 26, Great America officials reported the coaster was going to miss a hoped-for May 31 grand opening. It’s unknown when the ride will open.

(Source: Sun-Times Media Wire © Chicago Sun-Times 2014. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.)