Latest News 2017 October Lawsuit Filed for Amusement Park Injury Victim

Lawsuit Filed for Amusement Park Injury Victim

Knott's Berry Farm in California is facing a lawsuit over injuries caused to riders—including a six-year-old boy who fractured his eye socket. All of the injuries alleged in the lawsuit were caused by the Timber Mountain Log Ride, a logger-themed water ride whose variations are commonly found in theme parks all over the United States.

According to the lawsuit, the floating log abruptly decelerated after the "big drop," the traditional finale of all log rides. As a result, the boy, Charles Miller, smashed into the seat in front of him. Between 2010 and 2012, the California Division of Occupational Safety and Health investigated nine similar injuries from the log ride—including broken teeth and cuts around the eye socket.

Between 2000 and 2014, at least 10 riders were injured due to the abrupt stop at the end of the big drop on the same ride. In 2015, another lawsuit alleged that a six-year-old suffered an identical injury to the one Charles Miller suffered due to the same exact causes. The park settled the earlier lawsuit for a confidential amount.

Why Did the Log Ride Stop?

According to the Millers' attorney, the level of water on the ride is the issue. If there's too much water at the bottom of the drop, the log stops too suddenly—too little water, and the log will skip and hit the chute. Inspections seem to confirm this explanation. In 2015, the Department of Industrial Relations noted in an inspection that the device monitoring the water level wasn't working.

However, despite the inspection in 2015 and a total renovation in 2013, the ride has not been closed or closely investigated for the injuries it causes. It doesn't help that the ride, per its original design from 1969, does not have restraints.

The lawsuit is holding Knott's Berry Farm and its parent company responsible for the boy's medical care, lost earnings, and pain and suffering—specifically due to the boy's allegedly damaged eyesight.

Categories: Amusement Park Injury