Universal Orlando has supposedly stopped simultaneously launching a pair of intertwined roller coasters that make up the ride “Dragon Challenge,” formerly known as “Dueling Dragons,” at Universal’s Islands of Adventure. The theme park took action following two recent accidents within two weeks of one another where guests were struck by loose objects.
The two coasters, at least for the time being, no longer pass within feet of each other as they continue on their path, which was a trademark of the attraction.
The suspension erupted after two separate accidents occurred where guests were struck by unidentified objects while riding the coasters. One person reportedly lost his right eye.
The Orlando Sentinel is reporting that the first accident happened July 31 when a 52-year-old man was struck in his right eye by an object while riding in one of the coaster train’s front seat. The man apparently lost all vision in his eye and was forced to have it permanently removed.
The second incident involved a 19-year-old who was hit by something on his face, arm and foot while riding Dragon Challenge.
A spokesman for Universal said the investigation is ongoing, but does not think that the ride itself played a part in the accidents.
Dragon Challenge has been in operation since Islands of Adventure opened in 1999. It became incorporated into Universal’s Wizarding World of Harry Potter in June 2010.
Universal said that the ride has a high safety track record, with more than 50 million people enjoying the ride without incident since its debut.
The spokesman went on to say that Universal is taking the matter very seriously and places a strong emphasis on safety.
Each year, roughly 300 million people enter the gates of various theme parks throughout the United States. Florida is no stranger to numerous visitors throughout the year, with it being the home to many popular amusement and water parks. While these parks offer thrills and excitement, unfortunate accidents can happen. While certain calamities are inevitable, some tragic mishaps can be avoided entirely.
The Consumer Product Safety Commission has reported that in the last five years emergency room visits related to amusement park rides rose almost 87 percent. The investigation into these injuries found that several factors were to blame for injuries sustained including consumer behavior, mechanical failure, design limitations, defective products and operator behavior. Despite the causes of a theme park injury, whether minor or severe, it is critical to speak with a Florida Amusement Park Injury Attorney as soon as possible because your legal claim should be filed in a timely manner.
The Florida Personal Injury & Wrongful Death Attorneys at Whittel & Melton work with private safety experts and investigators to uncover the precise cause of your fair, carnival, water or theme park accident. We can help you and your family recover damages for medical expenses, mental anguish, lost wages and pain and suffering. Accidents that arise from amusement park rides and water parks can involve liability issues stemming from three different areas of personal injury law – general tort law, products liability, and premises liability. At Whittel & Melton, LLC, we are more than familiar with the analytical procedures, techniques and concepts of law necessary in order to productively prosecute an amusement or water park injury claim.
If you or a loved one has suffered injuries at a theme park in Orlando or throughout the state of Florida, contact the Florida Amusement Park Accident Attorneys at the Law Offices of Whittel & Melton, LLC online or dial us toll-free at 1-866-608-5529.