My wife went to a site that tries to load a PDF that crashes Safari for iPad. After trying to load Safari again, it tries to open up all of the tabs again including the one that is crashing Safari. While its loading the tab it locks everything up so I can't switch tabs. How do I break this endless cycle? How can I close this tab or have Safari not try to reopen this tab? Is it possible to do this without losing the history?
I struggled through this last night and stumbled upon a solution. Go to Settings > Safari. Turn on private browsing. It will ask you if you want to close all tabs before turning on private browsing. Touch 'yes'. Next turn private browsing back off. Voila! The browser works again!
I know this question is nearly 5 years old, but in case someone else comes along with the same question... I've had this happen to me a few times, here's what you do.
Completely close Safari (i.e. after hitting the Home button, double-press the Home button to close it completely and remove it from memory). Then go into Settings and turn on Airplane Mode.
Now enter Safari, it will probably complain that it can't load the webpage either because it has no internet connection or because Airplane Mode is on. Since Safari has no internet connection, it can't load the tabs, including whatever code is blocking you from closing tabs, and including the code that's crashing Safari.
Now you can close the troublesome tab. All that's left is to turn Airplane Mode off again, and presto, the troublesome tab is gone while the tabs you want are still safe.