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Dollywood closes tower ride made by same manufacturer as Orlando FreeFall after tragic death of teen

Dollywood closes tower ride made by same manufacturer as Orlando FreeFall after teen’s tragic death

  • Dollywood is closing one of their tower rides made by the same manufacturer as the Orlando FreeFall ride in Orlando
  • On Thursday night, Tire Sampson fell off the FreeFall ride at Orlando’s ICON Park — a 430-foot-high amusement ride, according to the attraction
  • The ride is operated by the SlingShot Group of Companies
  • A Dollywood spokesperson said their ‘Drop Line’ ride will be closed ‘out of an abundance of caution’
  • Tire, of Missouri, died after slipping out of his seat around 11pm during the Orlando Free Fall ride at ICON park
  • He was on holiday with his friend’s family who watched helplessly as he fell to the ground as the ride descended by 75mph
  • No criminal charges have been filed, but a lawsuit for negligence or wrongful death, or both, seems likely

Dollywood closes a tower ride made by the same manufacturer as the Orlando FreeFall ride after a 14-year-old boy fell from the ride in Florida and plunged to his death.

On Thursday night, Tire Sampson fell off the FreeFall attraction at Orlando’s ICON Park — a 430-foot-tall amusement ride, according to the attraction.

The ride is operated by the SlingShot Group of Companies.

A Dollywood spokesperson said its “Drop Line” ride at the park in Pigeon Forge, Tennessee, will be closed “out of great caution,” WATE said.

Dollywood closes tower ride made by same manufacturer as Orlando FreeFall after teen’s tragic death. While Dollywood does not have the specific drive involved in this tragic incident, the safety of our guests is our top priority.”

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Pictured: Tire Sampson, 14, fell off the FreeFall ride at Orlando's ICON Park — a 430-foot-tall amusement ride on Thursday night

Pictured: Tire Sampson, 14, fell off the FreeFall ride at Orlando’s ICON Park — a 430-foot-tall amusement ride on Thursday night

Pictured: Dollywood Dropline in Tennessee, which closed in response to a ride made by the same Orlando manufacturer

Pictured: Dollywood Dropline in Tennessee, which closed in response to a ride made by the same Orlando manufacturer “in abundance of caution” after a teenager died on the ride

1648478756 235 Dollywood closes tower ride made by same manufacturer as Orlando

“As a precautionary measure and until more details about the accident at ICON Park are known, we have temporarily closed Drop Line, our drop-tower ride developed by the same manufacturer,” the spokesperson said.

Tire, of Missouri, died after slipping out of his seat around 11 p.m. during the Orlando Free Fall ride at ICON park.

He was on vacation with his friend’s family who watched helplessly as he fell to the ground as the ride dropped at 75mph. He was named by police at a press conference on Friday.

A photo of Tire taken before the ride took off shows him sitting with his armor unbuckled and not pulled down to fasten to his seat.

It’s unclear if the harness was fully closed before the ride took off, or if the tour operator checked it was securely fastened.

An investigation into the park is now underway. At a news conference on Friday, Orange County Sheriff John Mina said, “It just seems like a terrible tragedy. We’ll see what that yields.’

Tire and the rest of the group had been told moments earlier that there were no seat belts on the ride. The only thing that kept them from falling out of their seats were plastic, fold-down harnesses that should snap into place, between the rider’s legs.

Tyre, pictured, and the rest of the group had been told moments earlier that there were no seat belts on the ride

Tyre, pictured, and the rest of the group had been told moments earlier that there were no seat belts on the ride

The entrance to Dollywood is viewed on October 18, 2016 in Pigeon Forge, Tennessee

The entrance to Dollywood is viewed on October 18, 2016 in Pigeon Forge, Tennessee

Pictured: The ride in Orlando's Icon Park where a 14-year-old boy died after falling from the 430-foot freestanding tower

Pictured: The ride in Orlando’s Icon Park where a 14-year-old boy died after falling from the 430-foot freestanding tower

One woman was concerned that there was nothing left to keep them in the seats as the ride went down and asked if there was a seat belt to clip them on.

“There are no seat belts,” the escort replied.

The Daily Mail had previously reported that a 911 call had revealed park rangers had not fastened Tyre’s seat belts properly, with the teen’s father saying his son knew something was wrong on the ascent during the ride.

No criminal charges have been filed, but a lawsuit for negligence or wrongful death, or both, seems likely.

Attorneys Ben Crump and Bob Hilliard have both been hired to represent the family.

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