A forensic engineer who was called on to testify in a premises liability lawsuit testified that owners of Kings Island in Mason, Ohio knew since 2000 that Son of Beast had problems, and that these problems were partly responsible for a 2006 accident that injured 27 people. A structural failure created a bump in the section of the track known as the Rose Bowl.
According to the engineer, park owners knew right away there was a problem because the ride was swaying too much, a fact he attributed to the use of inferior wood for the ride’s construction. The ride was closed several times and its owners attempted to build additional supports into the ride, but even this was problematic.
The then-owner of Kings Island, Paramount Pictures, fired the roller coaster manufacturer, Roller Coaster Company of Ohio, before the ride was opened. The final construction and subsequent repairs of the ride went on without the ride’s designer and without computer simulations necessary to know what effects the repairs would have on the roller coaster as a whole. Investigators encouraged the park’s new owners to obtain modeling software to ensure the repairs following the 2006 accident were undertaken appropriately, but at this point no information is available about whether the owners did so or not.
If you have been hurt in an amusement park or other place of business, please call or email the premises liability lawyers at Robert W. Kerpsack Co., L.P.A. today for a free consultation.