Tyre Sampson, then 14-years-old, fell to his death on an amusement park ride called the Free Fall drop tower. The ride takes riders up and then drops them nearly 400 feet at speeds that reach more than 75 mph. The commissioner of Florida’s Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services has been investigating whether there were security failures that caused the fall. While the case is still being investigated, they have confirmed there is no direct oversight of what thrill-ride manufacturers put in their manuals dictating safety measures. More specifically, the agency has stated that no federal or state agency oversees what manufacturers put in their ride manuals.
At this time, there are no immediate answers as to whether there were any security failures prior to Tyre’s death. Tyre was 6’5” and 340 pounds. The agriculture department has released documents related to its investigation, including the ride’s operations manual, which says 286.6 pounds is the maximum weight for each rider. It also notes that attendants need to pay particular attention to large riders and turn them away if they do not fit. A state accident report detailed that magnets work to stop the ride and that “when the magnets engaged, the patron came out of the seat.” “Harness was still in a down and locked position when the ride stopped,” the report stated.
When someone is injured or dies as a result of an accident, financial recovery may be available. Such recovery is particularly important when permanent, life-changing injuries are incurred. It is important to contact someone who understands the intricacies of the injured party’s right to recover.
If you or someone you know has been injured in an accident, contact an attorney at Abraham, Watkins, Nichols, Agosto, Aziz & Stogner by calling 713-222-7211 or toll-free at 1-800-594-4884. Abraham Watkins offers a free consultation to anyone wishing to pursue a claim for such injuries or fatalities.