Tags: dreamworld | deadly | water | ride

Dreamworld Water Ride Turns to Deadly Nightmare as 4 Die

Image: Dreamworld Water Ride Turns to Deadly Nightmare as 4 Die

In this image made from video, rescue personnel stand by the Thunder River Rapids ride at Dreamworld on the Gold Coast, Australia, after four people died when the ride malfunctioned. (Channel 9 via AP)

By    |   Wednesday, 26 Oct 2016 05:23 AM

Four people were killed when an amusement park water ride in Gold Coast, Australia, malfunctioned on Tuesday, throwing two of the riders while leaving two others trapped inside.

Two men, ages 38 and 35, and two women, ages 42 and 32, died while riding Thunder River Rapids at Dreamworld amusement park, the Australian Broadcasting Corporation reported. An initial investigation suggested that water pushed one raft into another and one of the rafts tipped over, throwing riders out, ABC said.

"(The ride) had sustained some sort of malfunction causing two people to be ejected ... another two people were caught inside the ride," Queensland Ambulance Service senior operations supervisor Gavin Fuller told ABC.

A Dreamworld statement said that the incident happened about 2:20 p.m. Australian Eastern time, according to the Sydney Morning Herald.

"The entire Dreamworld team is devastated and shocked by this incident," the statement said. "Our immediate concern now is to support the families of the victims and to provide appropriate counseling to our visitors and staff. We are working closely with the authorities to understand exactly what occurred. … Dreamworld is closed until further notice."

ABC reported that Thunder River Rapids has been operating since 1986 and was considered as a "moderate thrill" ride. As many as six people can be seated in the circular rafts in rapid-flowing water, noted the broadcaster.

Police Inspector Tod Reid said that CCTV footage was "available and that will be part of the investigation," ABC reported.

The Morning Herald wrote that there had been several other accidents at Dreamworld, two of the latest in the same Goldrush Country portion of the theme park. The publication said a man nearly drowning six months ago on the Rocky Hollow Log Ride, and the Buzz Saw rollercoaster was temporarily shut down in 2015 after there was a problem with its safety harnesses.

Australia Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull expressed condolences about the accident in a statement released Tuesday.

"Theme parks are a place for family fun and happiness, not tragedy," Turnbull wrote in his statement. "This is a very, very, sad, tragic event. Our thoughts and prayers are with the families of those who lost their lives.

"This is a very sad day, and we trust there will be a thorough investigation into the causes of this accident over the days to follow," he added.

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Four people were killed when an amusement park water ride in Gold Coast, Australia, malfunctioned on Tuesday, throwing two of the riders while leaving two others trapped inside.
dreamworld, deadly, water, ride
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2016-23-26
Wednesday, 26 Oct 2016 05:23 AM
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