Posted Tuesday, August 10, 2010 12:16 AM | Contributed by Walt S
The 12-year-old girl who fell about 100 feet to the ground on a free-fall ride in the Wisconsin Dells in late July successfully made it through two preliminary surgeries late last week and was scheduled to be in surgery Monday morning.
Read more from The Journal Sentinel.
This was a horrible, tragic accident however the limited medical information that is provided in the news story is very encouraging. The surgical interventions that were performed are not as involved as I would have expected from the degree of trauma that was sustained. The fact that she is showing movement in her lower extremities is very encouraging. A broken pelvis is serious, but they don't mention any neurosurgical procedures having been required. Although, there could obviously be more information that has not been made public. Overall, this is much more encouraging than I would have expected falling from that height. Let's keep her in our prayers.
I joined the CarePage website so I could read more of the medical information. It states she has 10 fractured vertebrae but no obvious spinal cord tears. There is no mention of serious head trauma and she appears to be alert and awake and able to interact with her family. She could likely be extubated soon, although they are doing spinal surgery, so that may be delayed. From what I could read, I think it is possible that she could make a substantial recovery eventually, although it will be a long course. This is truly amazing.
From reading, she definitely has a long way ahead, but also has came quite a long way already.
That she has no serious spinal or head injuries is something of a miracle. No 12-year-old should ever have to deal with that, but it's encouraging to hear a positive long-term assessment.
Also a member of carepages. Spinal surgery done. expected to take breathing tube out by end of week.
Long way to go but WOW. Go Teagan!
Still, how could this ever happen the way it happened? accident or not, its pure negligence.
While I'm sure the final report will have many details, we've got several things at play here:#1 A design which seemingly waited to the very end to raise safety net. A better design might have raised the net with the platform when it went up its first 40 feet.#2 The lack of an interlock between the ground and the platform preventing the release of the ride until the net was in place.#3 Lack of communications between the ground and the platform, whereby someone on the ground would spot that the net was properly raised and safe for a drop.#4 An attendant up top who made a mistake.I'm very glad Teagan is doing extremely well given the accident. That being said, I'd also wonder how the ride op is doing right now. Obviously for legal reasons not much has been heard of about the platform operator, but I can imaging he / she is under significant stress as well.
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