Be glad to be stuck at home: Terrifying theme park accidents
When you go to your nearest amusement park, you go for a day of fun. A day of trying not to throw up cotton candy and hot dogs on a roller coaster. A day of probably getting sunburn but it’s okay, because you got to hug a cartoon character.
What you don’t go to a theme park for, is to lose a body part, or worse, your life. But unfortunately, as with any metal contraption that looks like a death trap, sometimes it actually is a death trap just waiting to break. Not everyone who enters an amusement park gets to leave alive unfortunately.
So while you’re dreaming of riding the tallest drop ride, remember that this quarantine is saving you from turning out like one of these people. Mechanical errors are no joke people! We’re also not including anyone who died because of a medical condition on a ride, because while horribly tragic, there were extenuating circumstances around the death.
Universal Studios Orlando: Revenge of the Mummy
The indoor roller coaster themed around the Brendan Fraser films is a hit at all Universal parks it is located in. But unfortunately, less than six months after opening, it caused its first death. A man from Orange County, FL fell off the loading platform, about 4 feet. But because he hit his head, he suffered major damage.
After being rushed to the hospital and given emergency surgery, the man passed away the following day. But the coroner’s office ruled his death an accident, as the man only fell a short distance, and would’ve survived had he not hit his head.
Battersea Funfair: Big Dipper
This amusement park was built up as part of the Festival of Britain, but stayed active long after the festival ended. However, the wooden roller coaster that was the gem of the park caused the most trouble. In 1972, a train broke loose from the rope hauling it up the hill, and it flew backwards so fast, it jumped the barrier and crashed into two other trains.
Five children were killed in the incident, with an additional 13 injured. The ride was closed and dismantled immediately after, but the Funfair never recovered. Without the coaster to attract guests, the fair eventually shut its doors two years later in 1974.
Disneyland Park: Big Thunder Mountain Railroad
Any Disney Park fan knows the three Big Mountains are the best coasters to ride. But for one 22 year old visitor, it led to his death. In 2003, the train derailed and injured all of its riders. But unfortunately, the blunt force trauma and internal bleeding killed the 22 year old passenger.
Thanks to someone skipping a part of the maintenance checks, one of the axles came loose and caused the first cart on the train to come off and hit the ceiling of the tunnel, landing on the second car where the 22 year old was sitting.
Six Flags New England: Superman: The Ride
A 55 year old from Connecticut fell out of his seat on the coaster in 2004, right on the final turn of the coaster track. Further investigation proved that the operator failed to properly check restraints, as the man’s girth was too large for the restraint to close properly.
Since the man had Cerebral Palsy, family members claimed he shouldn’t have been allowed to ride in the first place. Of course, the park fired back that according to the ADA, anyone who can get on the ride by themselves can ride, disability or not.
Great Wolf Lodge Traverse City: Big Foot Pass
To the surprise of no one, water parks aren’t much safer either. A 6 year old from Michigan was visiting Great Wolf Lodge and the indoor water park with his family in 2008. While on the Big Foot Pass attraction, he slipped off one of the platforms into the water, but not before hitting his head.
He was taken out unconscious from the water, with lifeguards and his father performing CPR on him to attempt to revive him. But when he was taken to the hospital, the boy passed away from his injuries.
So keep in mind that even before COVID-19 hit the world, it wasn’t that safe to begin with. Your home is a heck of a lot safer than any amusement or water park ride, so just take a staycation this year.
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