By Angela Musallam

SACRAMENTO (CBS13) — It sounded like a pyrotechnics show but the chaotic scene of sparks and pops Saturday at the State Fair was coming from below the Monorail train.

Not only did sparks fly below the train, but they also started to fall on a straw smoothie stand.

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Steve Roy is the owner of the Maui Wowi Smoothie Stand and was inside the stand with one of his employees when the fire broke out.

He said he grabbed his fire extinguisher and sprayed down his equipment.

“I was right there by my freezer, it could have fallen on us and hurt us both,” Roy said.

Raquel Perez is the Maui Wowi employee that was in the shack with Roy. By the time she realized she was in danger, it was too late to escape from inside the stand.

RELATED: Ride Safety Inspections Underway Before State Fair Opens 

“So we had a customer who was ordering a strawberry smoothie, so I was just grabbing the mix. I just ran this way, I didn’t know what to do, I was like ‘should I duck? I don’t know…” Perez said.

Some witnesses told CBS13 that the fire sounded like a fireworks show, while others say they thought nearby propane tanks were exploding.

According to the Fair Media Center, an electrical brush under the monorail track shorted out, causing a small electrical fire just after 1 p.m. Saturday.

State Fair Officials confirmed the California State Fair Monorail will be closed for the remainder of Saturday after a small fire broke out under the train.

“At the time of the incident, the entire monorail system was in maintenance mode with no passengers on board. The monorail Train was stopped between Exposition Buildings 1 and 2. The train itself did not catch fire, only the electrical brush assembly. No one was injured during or after the incident,” a press release from the State Fair read.

Officials said safety ride inspector Barry Schaible determined the train will remain its current location until the Fair closes at 10 p.m. After the fair closes, officials said the maintenance tug will tow the train into the maintenance barn where a full inspection of the train will be conducted.

According to the inspection firm hired by the State Fair, that monorail train was already down for maintenance for an electrical problem.

“The safety of its visitors remain its top priority. The California State Fair goes beyond mandated safety requirements and hires an independent ride inspection company for the entire run of the State Fair,” the press release read.


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