Kings Island Son of Beast injury lawsuit goes to trial Thursday

Posted | Contributed by Jeff

The jury trial is one of two scheduled in Warren County Common Pleas Court during the next two months involving the Son of Beast incident that sent 27 people to the hospital in July 2006. Jennifer Wright of Defiance, Ohio allegedly suffered a hip injury that her attorney claims will require several replacements over her lifetime. She is asking the jury to force Kings Island to pay for punitive damages.

Read more from The Dayton Daily News.

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john peck's avatar

You know, with all the bad press this ride has gotten (in the last year alone) I really hope they decide to remove it.

Can anyone else think of an amusement injury case that actually made it all the way to trial? Usually, these settle.

SOB will come down. Especially since this is going to trial...

Pagoda Gift Shop's avatar

Brian Noble said:
Can anyone else think of an amusement injury case that actually made it all the way to trial? Usually, these settle.

From the article:

Wright’s case was originally coupled with five other cases relating to the same incident, but the other plaintiffs have all settled.

Last edited by Pagoda Gift Shop,

While I somewhat consider it sad its going against CF (Or does anyone have a list of all being sued? I hope the injured win.

It's just my opinion mind you and nobody elses. SOMEONE HAD TO KNOW that things weren't right. It was clear to me from day one that some stresses on the ride were beyond operating limits. No way in heck would it have broken a ledger the morning after it opened to SP holders. This is kinda backed up by the constant addition of support and bracing on the ride throughout its life I know other coasters recieve more bracing ect but they were trying to stop it from tearing itself apart the entire time it existed.

Sad that its CF, Hopefully they can go back against Viacom/CBS.

Sorry, but no rider should get injured through no fault of their own.

Chuck, you may not agree with me but maybe questionable rides will be taken more seriously.

Didn't this accident happen before Cedar Fair bought the park and did all that additional work to the ride? Removing the loop and re-tracking? I guess I was mistaken.

Son of Beast is such an impressive ride to look at. I was just at the park and was looking at the ride from over by Flight Deck and thinking how in the world was that massive thing ever a reality. I wish they could make it work again. But it's true that hip replacements don't last that long. My sister-in-law's mother has had several already.

I'm surprised they haven't settled.

LuvRaptor's avatar

There is mention in this article about another trial in November. If you were a juror and heard about all the previous incidents how could you possibly see in favor of CF? People have been hurt on this ride numerous times yet you ran it despite that.

Enough is enough, SOB needs to come down-its got the record for highest hill but it also holds the Ohio record for most injuries. Who wants that record?

SOB is a POS-has been since day 1 :(

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LostKause's avatar

I agree with you, Chuck. It almost seems like something I would type about the ride, as it echos my feeling on the subject exactly.

I'm pretty sure that it's coming down, from what I've heard over the last few months from many different people. Chuck, you'd know more than I would.

I don't know a lot. I know two facts. One is that the ride was shut down for the season and the crews were moved around right after the report (Note the ride operated several days after the injury reportedly took place and this was another aneurysm) Same thing happened on Flight Deck a couple years ago and to call that ride brutal. Id take a toddler on it. Two is that there were inquiries sent out to coaster companies as to what could be done with it. But all decisions were going to be made after daily operations were over.

Im not saying inspectors didn't think the ride could be operated safely. Im just saying, they knew there were problems from day one. Why did Paramount sue and WIN against RCCO? The rides been shut down numerous times and had additional support added. The trains were changed ect ect.

Id still doze the rosebowl and make a out and back out of it but thats just me. Seems a shame to waist a successful 214ft drop however some would argue it was a waist from day one anyhow :)

Last edited by Charles Nungester,
Pagoda Gift Shop's avatar

aerodynamic said:
Didn't this accident happen before Cedar Fair bought the park and did all that additional work to the ride? Removing the loop and re-tracking?

The order of events was:


CF buys Paramount Parks

Accident happens on SOB

Loop is removed and trains are changed during 2006 offseason


SOB re-opens mid-summer


Lady is injured in May

SOB closes in early June when injury is reported

Last edited by Pagoda Gift Shop,
john peck's avatar

Right, Chuck. It's not the drop or ending that's the problem... it's that dang rosebowl.

I too would bulldoze that, make the layout go out and back a bit more (with even some low-to-the-ground sections and a tunnel, and reconnect with the block and put on one of the old Geauga Lake Trains to make 3.

Then, you completely re-brand and retheme the ride as something new and the GP doesn't know the difference. Basically, a Phantoms Revenge make-over, removing the bad parts and making better new parts.

That, or tear it down.

Last edited by john peck,

Good idea John. While they're revamping it, make it a racer and have the longest, fastest racing woodie in the world! Heck, let's have KI toss the loop in while they're at it.

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Charles Nungester said:
Id still doze the rosebowl and make a out and back out of it but thats just me. Seems a shame to waist a successful 214ft drop

I think that is a great idea.

That massive first hill is a awesome backdrop for that part of the park.
It's possible to pull off something good with this along the lines of Phantoms Revenge.
And what about the new Timberliner trains.. Gravity Group has said that in some cases even without much of any re-tracking their trains will provide an existing coaster with a much smoother ride.

Thanks for the timeline Pagoda Gift shop.

Lose the big helix, build the out and back section (as I drew out in 03/2007), put the loop back, put a set of Timberliners on it, and it would pretty much be a new ride. :)

The outcome of this trial (did it happen today?) won't change anything. This was a case where something very clearly broke, and I'm not certain that there is any evidence that it was preventable or that the park did anything wrong. As soon as they knew it was broke they shut the ride down. The ride broke in spite of constant maintenance and attention, not because of the park's actions. The odd thing is that this is the third incident I can think of think of that has happened at a Cedar Fair after Cedar Fair took over, but before they had owned the park long enough to do anything about it. The other two were the Timber Wolf incident at Worlds of Fun, and the Chaos incident at Michigan's Adventure.

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Per Channel 9 news  Kings Islands Attorney says
The girl with the hip injury is exagerating her injuryies.
Don't a doctor decide that?
Chuck, saying that don't look good in a jurys eyes.

Typically, said attorney would base that on information from their team's doctors.

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He says he will present evidence showing that the tear didn't show up until after the accident, when Wright sought treatment for a fall at work.

I have a feeling this is probably the reason they let this get to trial instead of settling like they did with the other people.

Last edited by CP Chris,

And then one day you find ten years have got behind you
No one told you when to run, you missed the starting gun

This is getting good.

She might have fallen at work because of the hip injury she sustained on the ride.

Her boyfriend and witness giving the details of how the lap bar clamped down on her during the accident makes plenty of sense. The ride actually busted apart with a train load of people in it. I still don't understand why they let this go to trial.

The Oxford press..
“I ask you to award her reasonable damages, which she is entitled to” Finke said. “But nothing more and nothing less.” Pretty slimy.

In reality at this point the jury is being asked by our court system to award an amount (punitive damages) that would punish the offending party and cause them to take notice and help ensure such an event doesn't take place again.

Punitive damages are a punishment on the defendant not a reward for the plaintiff.

I hope she is taken good care of and I hope CF makes a cool new out and back hyper woody out of the thing after this is all finished.

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