Over the Fourth of July weekend, a 44-year-old woman was violently ejected from the Gatlinburg Mountain Coaster as the coaster car was coming towards the end of the ride at full speed. According to the report filed by Formstack, LLC, the company that owns the ride, the roller coaster accident victim suffered multiple fractures to her wrists, knee caps and elbow. The victim also sustained head trauma and broken ribs.
While an inspection report from the National Association of Amusement Ride Safety Officials (NAARSO) did not show any mechanical errors on the ride, the Mountain Coaster team did admit an operational issue occurred where a worker did not follow the standard procedures for buckling lap belts. Tennessee Labor Department’s amusement device unit has since ordered the ride to shut down.
GATLINBURG MOUNTAIN COASTER IS RESPONSIBLE FOR ENSURING PASSENGER SAFETY
While coasters can be a blast, we trust that the employees and operators of the ride are putting the safety of the passengers first. Unfortunately, this is not always the case. Roller coaster owners are responsible for doing the following to make sure their park runs safely:
- Providing sufficient security for the area
- Training staff on how to safely operate the rides
- Consistently inspecting the rides for malfunctions
- Using sturdy materials in the construction of the rides
- Using safe restraint systems
- Monitoring employees to make sure they are operating the rides safely
A roller coaster requires a special amount of maintenance and care in order to keep it safe. On the other hand, even a perfectly functioning roller coaster cannot prevent injuries when workers are not properly trained on how to follow standard safety procedures. When this happens, roller coaster accidents that result in catastrophic injuries can occur. We commend Tennessee’s Labor Department for stepping in so quickly to ensure no further injuries can occur.
Stanley A. Davis is a Nashville personal injury attorney that fights for those injured in roller coaster accidents.
“And there is salvation in no one else, for there is no other name under heaven given among men by which we must be saved.” Acts 4:12