A 14-year-old boy on vacation with his family fell to his death on a thrill ride at the ICON Park. The amusement park where the boy was killed is located in Orange County, Florida.
The fatal amusement part accident occurred just after 11:00 p.m. The youth was on the Orlando FreeFall at the time of his tragic death. The Orlando FreeFall is the world’s tallest free-standing drop tower. According to ICON Park, the tower rises to a height of 430 feet.
Emergency personnel were dispatched to the Florida amusement park, arriving at the scene of the accident not long after the initial 911 telephone call was made. The emergency team began life saving procedures on the boy, who was transported to a local medical center. The boy died at the hospital not long after his arrival.
The boy killed in the Orlando amusement park accident is identified as Tyre Sampson. He was visiting Florida with his family from Missouri, according to Orange County Sheriff John Mina.
Local law enforcement has classified the death of Tyre Sampson as accidental. In other words, while absolutely catastrophic, there is no criminality thought to be involved in the death of the 14-year-old boy. With that duly noted, Mina further noted:
Our role in this situation is to determine whether or not this is an accident or an intentional act and this does appear just to be a terrible tragedy. We'll see moving forward what [the investigation] results in.
Investigation into the death of Tyre Sampson will include whether there have been any reports about problems with the new ride at the Florida amusement part. The Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Affairs, which oversees amusement parks in the Sunshine State, is charged with this aspect of the investigation into the accident.
ICON Park had been issued a permit to operate the thrill ride on December 20, 2021. The initial inspection of the ride found that there were “no deficiencies” with the equipment. The next inspection of the thrill ride was scheduled for six months from the date of the initial one. Thus, that follow up inspection was not too far down the proverbial rode.
The Orlando FreeFall began operation in late December. It is one of two new rides to debut at ICON Park. Up to 30 passengers at a time ride to the top of the tower, where they are tilted toward the ground before going into a nearly 400-foot free fall at over 75 miles per hour.
The family of Tyre Sampson issued a statement regarding the death of the teenager:
This young man was the kind of son every parent hopes for -- an honor roll student, an aspiring athlete, and a kind-hearted person who cared about others. A fun theme park visit with his football team should not have ended in tragedy. Every parent who sees this horrific video can't help but think the same thing: That could have been my child.
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