Following the unexpected, multi-day downtime for the Walt Disney World monorail system, the aging fleet continues to face operational struggles. Guests riding the Walt Disney World monorail loops around Magic Kingdom will face delayed operations as the monorails slow to a crawl between Disney’s Grand Floridian Resort and Magic Kingdom.
As you can see in our video below, both the Resort Monorail loop and the Express Monorail loop are forced to slow to nearly a stop between the Grand Floridian monorail station and the pedestrian swing bridge before resuming normal speed as they continue on to the Magic Kingdom station. During this section of reduced speed, the monorail is incredibly jerky as pilots constantly start and stop the monorail, presumably to keep it at a speed below idling speed. If you have time to spare, we have a multi-angle video of the problem area for the monorail, including a view from inside the monorail where a pre-recorded message informs guests that the monorail is “required to operate at a reduced speed”.
It’s not immediately clear what the issue is, and Disney World has not made any public statements about the monorail issues at this time. The Walt Disney World monorail fleet is more than 30 years old and going through its second round of refurbishments in the past three years.
While the reduced speed is annoying, monorail service continues otherwise uninterrupted.
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The monorails are already 10 years past when they should have been retired. WDW refuses to properly maintain the system. The giant concrete pillars that hold up the beams are called pylons. Pylon number 106 that resides between the grand Floridian and the Magic Kingdom has had alignment issues for years. It requires the Monorail to frequently slow down when crossing the sections of the line to prevent further misalignment. The monorail system is long overdue for an entire rehaul. The monorails as they are today cannot properly handle the amount of traffic that goes through Disney in a single day. In order to function at best capacity the monorail should operate with 4 Monorails on the resort beam, 3 on the Express beam, and 2 on the Epcot beam. The problem is there are 12 Monorails in total and barely 9 of them can function on a good day. If one monorail goes down, it throws the entire operation into chaos. Disney as a company needs to work on an entire overhaul of their monorail system rather than bandaging it every few months.
I was just there this week, they worked fine and look like they were recently painted, or had new decals applied. All were very clean.
I think any mechanical device will have issues and think this is overblown and is just fodder for tiktok
I’ll take the judgment above of the former monorail pilot. Planes more than 30 years old can safely fly – with meticulous daily maintenance and downtimes for thorough overhauls. Planes that old are nevertheless seldom used in regular commercial service. What is the frequency, intensity and quality of maintenance on the monorail trains, the tracks and the pylons?
I agree with the above former Monorail Pilot. Disney could do a much better job maintaining the monorail fleet. They are iconic and are not spaceships. They are mechanical and can be repaired. It might be feasible to convert them to the same system as the people mover. Less moving parts and most likely easier to maintain.