Amusement parks are a lot of fun but sometimes things can go wrong
15. Thunder Mountain- The Big Thunder Mountain Railroad ride suffered a serious malfunction which resulted a wheel falling off the coaster. The wheel prevents the coaster lifting off the track, but without the wheel, the ride derailed killing 22 year old artist, Marcelo Torres and injuring ten other riders. Disneyland took responsibility for his tragic death, stating maintenance staff had failed to take preventative key tasks on the ride that lead to his death. His family settled a lawsuit against the Walt Disney Company for an undisclosed amount of money. Although, his parents state no amount of money can bring back their son.
14. Xcelerator coaster- Kyle Wheeler was sitting in the front row of the Xcelerator ride at Knott’s Berry farm when the ride’s launch cable snapped in half. The cable gashed his calf and he was left injured as the coaster was rocketing to the sky at 80 mph. Kyle had to undergo several surgeries to fix to the muscle damage to the leg and go into physical therapy to learn how to walk again. The family was able to settle a hefty amount of money from the lawsuit and even though Kyle recovered from the incident, I’m sure the experience was unforgettable.
13. Sizzler ride- Sixteen year old Samantha Aguilar died after the Sizzler carnival ride in Texas collided with a metal barrier. The ride spins people around at a middle point while the rider’s seats spin around simultaneously. The other riders complained of the seat belt not being properly buckled and that the ride operator told them they would be fine without it. Another fifteen year old girl was thrown off the ride; she suffered minor injuries and was able to recover. An investigation was pending as Samantha’s family was able to launch a campaign to designate more safety precautions when riding in amusement parks.
13. Seaworld- A twenty seven year old man was found face down in a killer whale tank at SeaWorld. There were no signs of trauma and his body was still intact. Drowning seemed to be the apparent cause of death due to “horseplay.” The killer whale at SeaWorld measured twenty two feet long and weighed 11,000 pounds. The killer whale wasn’t used to people being in his tank and rough horseplay caused the man to drown in the water. It’s rare for people to get inside a whale’s tank without personnel catching them and people usually know not to step into the restricted zones, but that doesn’t stop them from doing it anyways.
11. King’s Crown- A little girl is miraculously recovering after she was scalped riding on the King’s Crown carnival ride in Omaha, Nebraska. Witnesses say the ride just started when the girl’s hair got caught and that the ride was still moving despite her screaming. Eleven year old Elizabeth Gilreath underwent surgery and her doctors are hopeful that she will regain her vision and that her hair will grow back. Investigators are still conducting an investigation to see if the ride malfunctioned, she was the only one injured.
10. Phantom Manor- Phantom Manor at Disneyland Paris had to be shut down after employees discovered a deceased ride technician. It is believed he died by accidental electrocution while working on the ride before it opened that morning. This isn’t the first incident that happened at Disneyland Paris, back in 2013, a five year old fell out on the Pirates of the Caribbean ride and a man was trapped under a boat during the Small Ride ride. Although, employees and technicians who work behind the scenes are more prone to get hurt. The Phantom Manor ride closed down for several days while police conducted an investigation.
9. Ferris Wheel- Ferris Wheel’s are usually slow rides, so that means no one should get hurt right? Wrong! An eleven year old fell to her death, dropping more than 90 feet into the ground. Abiah Jones rode on the ferris wheel by herself at Mariners Landing in New Jersey. Eyewitnesses state that she peered over the railing and fainted and fell over. The ride was shut down temporarily as police conducted an investigation.The giant ferris wheel is the largest operating wheel on the east coast and is 156 feet high. Authorities are unsure if it was a freak accident or a mechanical failure.
8. Animal Kingdom- An Alabama family was devastated after a snake escaped from its enclosure at Disney’s Animal Kingdom, killing a woman and biting a boy. The snake had fallen from a tree and attacked the boy, resulting in the woman; Matt Morgan to go into cardiac arrest. She died at the hospital a few days after her great grandson was bitten. Park officials state that the wild nonvenomous snake was not owned by Disney. The boy recovered well and was able to enjoy the rest of his day at the park. I guess you really can be scared to death.
7. Batman ride- Seventeen year old Asia Leeshawn was decapitated by the Batman ride at Six Flags in Austell, Georgia. He jumped over some fences and crossed into a restricted area, while trying to retrieve his hat when he was struck by the roller coaster. The Batman roller coaster is one of the main attractions at Six Flags, reaching speeds up to fifty miles per hour. No one on the roller coaster was injured but the ride has to be closed down. Another boy was also with Asia when he entered the restricted zone, but he suffered no injuries.
6. Ride of Steel- A U.S. Army veteran was tragically killed when he was thrown off the Ride of Steel roller coaster at the Darien Lake Theme Park in New York. James Thomas Hackemer was a double amputee, who lost his legs during his deployment in Iraq. The ride’s safety restraints were working properly and Ride of Steel is one of the tallest roller coasters soaring 208 feets and raveling at least 70 miles per hour. It is debated that legs are a counterweight on these rides to help keep the riders bodies stable when in motion.
5. Disney World- A Nebraska family suffered a major loss of their son at a Disney resort in Florida. The family enjoyed a fun day at Disney world and was staying at a Walt Disney World resort on nearby waters. Two year old Lane Graves was playing near the water when he was pulled in by an alligator. His father tried to save him but it was too late. It is unclear as to who is at fault. Disney’s Seven Seas Lagoon is connected various channels that leads into large bodies of water with easy access that allows alligators in. Florida is a common sight for alligators and Disney does have “no swimming” signs visible, but who is to responsible for this horrible tragedy? What do you think?
4. Scream- Two people died and several passengers were injured on the Scream ride at the Longshan Amusement park in China. Witnesses claim staff didn’t allow much time for seatbelts to be buckled and two riders were thrown off shortly before the ride started. The new ride was only open for one day, featuring two gondolas that swing on opposite arms that spins riders around. Some horrified witnesses captured the fatal incident on their camera phones, turning it into police while investigation ensued. Following the accident, the ride was momentarily closed and the local government sent a rescue operation to treat the other riders.
3. Smiler- Witnesses describe the scene as gory, stating that there was blood everywhere after two roller coasters collided at Alton Towers in England. The ride is a roller carrying two sets of carriages, one carriage was empty while the other had 16 passengers. When the two carriages crashed, it resulted in several people to go unconscious and others received leg injuries. Apparently, the Smiler has had a history of accidents. In 2013, a metal bolt fell off the track, closing down the ride with 48 people on board and then months later one of the wheel’s broke off and hit a passenger. I definitely won’t be going on this ride at all.
2. Tower of Terror- Bautista Riera was left paralyzed after riding the Tower of Terror in Disneyland Paris. The Tower of Terror is a truly frightful ride as passengers plunge 200 feet down on a lift. After the boy had gotten off the ride, he complained of being sick. At the hospital, his condition showed that he suffered spine and bone contusion. His upper limbs were paralyzed upon arrival in the hospital. The incident sparked controversy and a spokesman quoted that it is a question of medical privacy. An investigation conducted by the spokesperson said all rides were working properly and there were no malfunctions.
Fujin Raijin- A woman was killed and 19 others were severely hurt after a roller coaster accident at Expoland in Osaka, Japan. The ride derailed and hit a guardrail after a wheel axle on one of the car broke. The roller coaster is forty meters high and can hit speeds of up to 75 miles per hour. During the accident, the roller coaster was swinging wildly and ran off course, killing a nineteen year old woman after her head was struck on the rail. The ride was closed down while riders received medical treatment for their injuries.