Carowinds In Hot Water After Ride Inspector Severs Hand

Cedar Fair, Carowinds’ parent company, faces a $42,000 fine after a third-party contractor severed his hand while inspecting the Windseeker ride in early 2019. This is just the latest in a long line of dangerous incidents occurring at Carowinds. Even with strict regulations and standards, amusement parks can be a cavalcade of accidents waiting to happen.

This injured inspector is entitled to file both a workers’ compensation claim and a third-party personal injury claim against Cedar Fair. The Charlotte workers comp and personal injury attorneys at Price Petho & Associates P.L.L.C. have been successfully getting results for workers and victims since 1979.

A history of incidents

The contractor’s hand was severed after it was stuck in a pulley. The accident occurred as he inspected the Windseeker, which is a 300-foot tower. The South Carolina Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) launched an investigation after the accident to determine if violations contributed to the incident. The agency fined Carowinds for six serious issues. Each one resulted in a $7,000 fine.

There have been incidents at Carowinds for decades, and somehow, they have maintained a consistency of dangerous accidents even as safety regulations have strengthened and increased.

Here is a timeline of just a few of the incidents Carowinds has seen in the last 25 years:

  • May 1996 – The brakes locked on a Drop Tower: Scream Zone car, not allowing it to move. Three people were stuck 160 feet in the air for nearly three hours before eventual rescue.
  • March 2007 – On a test run of the Borg Assimilator roller coaster (later renamed Nighthawk), seven park employees received minor injuries after the seats changed position during the ride because the ride operator accidentally pressed a button that unlocked the pins responsible for keeping the seats in a fixed position.
  • June 2016 – A transformer exploded and caused a power failure, stranding riders on various rides, including 17 riders on Windseeker, and unspecified numbers on the Intimidator and the Fury 325 roller coasters. Riders waited hours to be removed and evacuated.
  • June 2018 – A vehicle on the Dodg’em ride caught on fire.
  • August 2019 – A rider of the Copperhead Strike received a hand injury while riding and was taken to the hospital. The ride was temporarily closed during the investigation.

When should I contact a lawyer?

There are two ways a work-related injury can be compensated—workers’ compensation or a third-party claim. If no one was at fault for the accident, or if your employer or coworkers was at fault, workers’ compensation is available. If someone else’s negligence caused an injury, the worker may be able to bring a third-party personal injury suit.

The Charlotte workers comp and personal injury attorneys at Price Petho & Associates P.L.L.C. are here to get injured workers fair compensation. We will investigate the accident, identifying all responsible parties. If you or a loved one has been injured at work and needs help getting past the red tape, contact us for a free consultation of your case by clicking here or calling 704-850-6322.