A mother of two who claims she almost choked to death on a zip line ride has filed an amusement park injury lawsuit in DuPage County.
Hanging by the Neck in Midair
Personal injury attorneys representing Evelyn Rapier filed the amusement park injury lawsuit in DuPage County Circuit Court on April 26, 2022. The suit accuses Urban Air Trampoline and Adventure Park and two of its employees of negligence in an incident that took place last autumn.
On November 19, 2021, Rapier and her family were celebrating her three-year-old son’s birthday at the park, which is located at 140 E. Lake St. in Bloomingdale, IL, when she decided to try out the Sky Rider zip line ride.
While Rapier was on the Sky Rider, part of the ride’s harness came loose and slipped around her neck. As a result, she soon found herself hanging by the neck in midair.
“It was strapped up here, which I had no idea, and ended up choking me,” she said.
Rapier managed to prop herself up with her hand for the duration of the ride. Cellphone video of the incident shows her reaching for the top of the harness with her left hand and grabbing at her neck with her right hand while she glided across the ground.
“As I swung through the air with the harness choking me, I thought I was going to die,” said Rapier. “All I could think of was my family, friends, and especially my young children watching this.”
She later received medical treatment for rope burns and contusions on the neck, a severe headache, and a sore throat.
Amusement Park Injury Lawsuit Alleges Negligence
Evelyn Rapier’s amusement park injury lawsuit accuses Urban Air of failing to adequately maintain its zip line ride or its equipment. The suit further alleges that the two employees operating the Sky Rider did not strap Rapier in properly or check the ride to make sure that it was operating safely. Her legal team claims that she did not sign a waiver or a release on the date of the incident.
Rapier and her attorneys expressed hope that the lawsuit would help protect future amusement park patrons.
“Thank God I was able to find the strength to pull the harness away from my neck and survive,” she said. “But a lot of people, especially children, would not have been able to do this. I want to let people know this ride is dangerous and that the adventure park and its employees are careless and do not make safety a priority.”
“I think we want to make sure that people are aware of the risks, but also the owners and operators of these facilities are making sure that people working there are trained and they also appreciate the risks that their customers faced,” added her attorney.
In response, Urban Air released a statement insisting that the “safety and well-being of our guests and employees is Urban Air’s highest priority in everything we do. One injury is one too many, but what’s important to remember is ride safety is a shared partnership between the park and their guests and it’s essential they follow posted and verbal guidelines and instructions. Out of an abundance of caution, all staff members were retrained after the event on November 19, 2021.”
The Danger of Amusement Park Rides
As summer approaches, many people may be considering taking a trip to an amusement park. While these types of entertainment centers may offer a number of fun family activities, amusement park rides can also prove highly dangerous to unsuspecting attendees.
Each year, over a thousand people are injured at amusement parks in the United States. In 2019 alone, there were an estimated 1,299 amusement park accidents resulting in injuries nationwide. The Consumer Product Safety Commission reports that there are an average of 4.5 ride-related deaths annually, but even a non-fatal amusement park injury can be physically and financially devastating.
Protecting Amusement Injury Park Victims
If you have been hurt at an amusement park, you may find it difficult to obtain full and fair compensation because of the challenges involved in establishing liability and identifying all of the parties who may be responsible for your injuries. To help overcome these challenges and protect your rights, contact the knowledgeable personal injury attorneys at GWC Injury Lawyers LLC.
With more than $2 billion recovered in verdicts and settlements, GWC is one of the premier Personal Injury and Workers’ Compensation law firms in Illinois. Our personal injury attorneys have the experience, the determination, the resources, and the reputation you need to get you and your family the justice you deserve.