An autopsy revealed that the 14-year-old boy who fell to his death at a Florida amusement park earlier this year exceeded the ride’s weight limit by almost 100 pounds.
Tyre Sampson tragically died on March 24 while visiting ICON Park outside Orlando with family and friends.
Autopsy Revealed Teen Who Died At Florida Amusement Park Exceeded Ride’s Weight Limit
He was a passenger on the Orlando FreeFall drop tower ride, which is allegedly the world’s tallest freestanding drop tower. It shoots passengers up and then drops them nearly 400 feet at speeds reaching more than 75 mph, according to the park. The owner’s manual for the tower lists the ride’s weight limit at 287 pounds.
The autopsy also ruled Tyre’s cause of death was blunt force trauma, which resulted in multiple fractures, lacerations, and hemorrhaging to his head, neck and extremities. The report said his manner of death was an accident.
Back in April, a forensic engineering firm — Quest Engineering & Failure Analysis Inc. — hired by state officials to investigate Tyre’s death discovered that manual adjustments had been made to two seats on the drop tower ride, including the seat occupied by Tyre.
In the report, it was said this adjustment allowed for a greater gap than normal between the harness and the seat.
“The cause of the subject accident was that Tyre Sampson was not properly secured in the seat primarily due to misadjustment of the harness proximity sensor,” the forensic engineering firm’s report said.
The Orlando Freefall ride has been closed since Tyre’s death and will remain so indefinitely. An attorney for the ride’s operator, Orlando Slingshot, issued a statement Monday saying Tyre’s death “was a tragic accident.”
“We continue to communicate and cooperate with representatives of Tyre’s family, as well as the Department of Agriculture. We are devoted to working with our lawmakers in making lasting safety changes in the amusement park industry,” said Slingshot attorney Trevor Arnold.
In a previous statement, Arnold said “all protocols, procedures and safety measures provided to us by the manufacturer of the ride were followed.”
Tyre’s parents, Nekia Dodd and Yarnell Sampson, are being represented by different attorneys but filed a wrongful death lawsuit together.
The suit names multiple defendants including ICON Park, Orlando SlingShot, the ride’s manufacturer, Austria-based Funtime Handels; and the manufacturer of the seats and harnesses, Germany-based Gerstlauer Amusement Rides.
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