The Top Five Amusement Park Disasters of All Time


It was a close call for riders of the Magnum XL-200 rollercoaster at Cedar Point Saturday, after a train coming into the station failed to brake, smashing into a departing train. Luckily the ride was only traveling at about 10 miles per hour at impact, so no one was seriously injured, although two people were treated for minor injuries at the park’s first aid station. Unfortunately, not all amusement park mishaps have such happy endings. To celebrate the start of this year’s rollercoaster season, we’re rolling out C-Notes’ Top Five Amusement Park Disasters of All Time. 5). July 9, 1980. At an amusement park in Missouri, a 26-year-old man was killed when a rollercoaster operator, unaware that the man was still aboard the ride, diverted the train into a service area with a low-hanging wooden beam. You can guess how that one ended. Ouch! 4). May 22, 1981. This hurts just to think about. A 14-year-old girl was killed at a park in Rochester, New York, after she fell off of a ride where electric cars move along a track. The girl fell into a rotating barrel, which then forced her body through a 5-by-7-inch gap into the area underneath the track. 3). May 11, 1984. Eight teenagers were burned alive inside the Haunted Castle at a Six Flags in New Jersey. After a light-bulb burned out in one of the rooms of the haunted house, one of the teenagers lit a cigarette lighter to find his way out. The lighter ignited some foam padding on the walls and the whole place went up like a piece of flash paper. 2). August 23, 1988. A 26-year-old man was killed at Astroland in Coney Island after he decided to stand up on the Cyclone rollercoaster as it was descending down the first hill. He fell 30 feet and landed on a cross-beam, dying instantly. That’ll leave a mark. 1). June 2, 1997. One teenager was killed and 32 were injured on a slide at Waterworld USA in Concord, California. The group of high school seniors was trying to break the record for the number of people going down the slide at once. The slide buckled under the weight, sending the teenagers falling 30 feet into a pile of bodies. -- Jared Klaus


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