The Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services has opened an investigation into why a roller coaster derailed at an amusement park Thursday night in Daytona Beach.
The accident on the Sand Blaster ride at the Daytona Beach Boardwalk sent two riders plunging 34 feet to the ground and left two others dangling in one of the ride’s cars, according to the Daytona Beach Fire Department.
Four riders, all of whom were on the same car, and two others were rushed to Halifax Health Medical Center in Daytona Beach. A hospital official said information about their condition might be released sometime Friday.
Later Friday, the hospital said it “received nine patients.”
The Sand Blaster has been operating at Daytona Beach since 2013 after the 40-year-old ride was bought from a closed amusement park in Delaware a year earlier.
Thrill seekers and adventurists flock to roller coasters for an adrenaline rush. However, a roller coaster is one of the most dangerous rides at amusement parks. Each year there are an estimated 9,000 emergency room visits that stem from amusement park and roller coaster injuries.
While amusement park rides undergo extensive testing and regular inspections to ensure that they are safe, accidents can still happen, and when they do they can result in serious personal injury or wrongful death.