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Linda Chalat
Linda Chalat
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Roller Coaster Tragedy Results from Operator Inattention

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Now with the warmer days of summer soon here, families all over the nation will be enjoying big and small amusement centers. But the tragedy that occurred on a Saturday night two summers ago is a cautionary tale for parents.

A family visited Go Bananas, an indoor family entertainment center in northwest suburban Norridge, Illinois. The center’s small roller coaster, the Python Pit, is a popular ride, and the family’s three-year-old twins were soon in a roller coaster car. But while on the ride, one of the youngsters squirmed out from the safety bar and became wedged between two of the cars, according to Norridge police chief. Then the young boy fell about 3 or 4 feet from the moving roller coaster. He suffered multiple injuries and died at the park in front of his family.

The family filed a wrongful-death lawsuit against the park Wednesday. His parents filed the lawsuit, which charges the amusement park with negligence, in the Circuit Court of Cook County. The lawsuit asserts the ride did not immediately stop when the boy was at risk. The parents saw their young son standing up in the ride and attempted to get the attention of the operator to stop the ride.

The lawsuit asserts the ride did not immediately stop when the boy was at risk. The operator pressed a button to apply the ride’s emergency brake, but the Python Pit did not immediately stop.