Five people had to be hoisted to safety after an elevator in the Grand Canyon Caverns failed some 64m (210ft) underground.
A couple, a couple with two young children and at least two people in their 70s were trapped for 24 to 30 hours after a 30-minute tour of the cave.
The tourist attraction allows people to tour an ancient cave and stay at an underground hotel located 120 miles southwest of Arizona’s Grand Canyon National Park.
Coconino County Sheriff’s officials said in a news conference that tourists were down the 21st floor preparing to return to the ground when they discovered the elevator wasn’t working properly Sunday night local time.
A man from the group was able to get out of the car and notify authorities after climbing the emergency stairs to the ground, the release added.
Police said five of those trapped were “unable to use emergency stairs to evacuate on their own.”
They spent the night in a hotel suite at the bottom of the cave after authorities determined they should have stayed there while maintenance work was carried out on the elevator.
This means they are safe and have access to food while they wait for rescue.
Ten members of the Coconino County Sheriff’s Search and Rescue Team and four members of the Flagstaff Fire Department’s Technical Rescue Team set up a rope rescue system in the elevator shaft after being notified that the repairs were unsuccessful.
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Rescuers went to the bottom of the emergency stairs, secured each visitor in their harness, and lifted them up the shaft one by one.
“Each lift took approximately 15 minutes to complete,” police said.
The sheriff’s office said the rescue was complete and no injuries were reported.
Sherry Jimenez. One of the rescuers told Phoenix TV ABC15 after being rescued: “I can’t say thank you because everything they did was so professional and so safe.”