Amusement park tragedies that shocked the world

The horrific incident at Dreamworld has shocked the nation.

But it's not the first time something tragic has occurred at one of Australia's amusement parks or shows.

October 25, 2016

Four adults die after becoming trapped on a conveyor belt when their raft flipped on the Thunder River Rapids ride at Dreamworld, Queensland.

September 12, 2014

Adelene Leong, aged eight, dies after being thrown from high-speed ride, the Airmaxx 360, at the Royal Adelaide Show.

May 18, 2013

A boy, aged five, was seriously injured after being flung from the Frizbee ride at a school fete in Highfields, Queensland.

April 6, 2010

Three teenage girls are seriously injured when the Ferris wheel carriage they were riding in broke off and plummeted to the ground at Bluesfest at Byron Bay.

March 11, 2001

When an inflatable carriage broke free from a ride at a carnival in Kapunda, South Australia, an eight-year-old girl died and 11 people were injured.

Sept 2, 2000

Thirty-seven people were hurt when the Spin Dragon ride collapsed and dropped a 4.3 tonne gondola onto queuing riders at the Royal Adelaide Show.

Feb 22, 1997

When a carriage on the Octopus ride broke free and fell to the ground at the Rylstone Show near Mudgee, NSW, an 11-year-old girl died and two boys were injured.

June 9, 1979

Six children and one adult were killed when Sydney's Luna Park's Ghost Train caught fire.

April 16, 1979

13 people were injured on the Big Dipper when a steel runner came loose on a rollercoaster train at Sydney's Luna Park.

October 24 1968

High-wire stuntsman Adrian Labans, 44, fell to his death during a high wire act at the Royal Hobart Show.


20 high-profile worldwide incidents:

According to the US Consumer Product Safety Commission there were 52 deaths associated with amusement park rides between 1990 and 2004.

July 19, 2013

A 52-year-old woman fell 23m to her death while riding the Texas Giant roller coaster at Six Flags Over Texas, US.

July 6, 2012

A 67-year-old employee of Six Flags Le Ronde, Quebec, Canada, was killed. The man was found underneath the Le Vampire attraction in a restricted area, and had reportedly been struck in the head by the roller coaster.

June 28, 2008

A 17-year-old male from was decapitated by the passing Batman train after he climbed over two six-foot fences and entered a restricted area at Six Flags Over Georgia, US. Reports said that the victim was trying to retrieve his lost hat.

June 12, 2007

A 14-year-old girl was paralyzed after she fell into a gap between the roller coaster Poltergeist's cars at Six Flags Fiesta Texas in the United States, landing on a concrete floor about 3m below the platform.

May 29, 2004

A 52-year-old ride mechanic was killed by a Ragin' Cajun roller-coaster car as he attempted to cross the tracks at the Six Flags Great America, Illinois, US.

May 1, 2004

A 53-year-old, 104.5kg man with disabilities fell out of his coaster seat during the last turn and was killed. Reports show that the ride attendant had not checked that the guest's ride restraint was secure as his girth was too large for the T-bar-shaped ride restraint to close properly.

September 5, 2003

A 22-year-old man died after suffering severe blunt force trauma and extensive internal bleeding in a derailment of the Big Thunder Mountain Railroad roller coaster that also injured 10 other riders at Disneyland Park, California, US.

July 10, 2003

A 52-year-old grandmother was strapping her 4-year-old grandson into the Joker's Jukebox at Six Flags New Orleans, US, when the ride started up. She died from blunt-force internal injuries after being struck by a ride vehicle.

April 22, 2003

A 36-year-old stage technician fell 60 feet from a catwalk in the Hyperion Theater at Disney California Adventure, US. The victim did not regain consciousness following the incident and died on May 18, 2003.

March 21, 1999

A 28-year-old woman died, and 10 others were injured, when the Roaring Rapids raft they were on overturned in 2-3 feet of water due to sudden deflation of the air chambers that support the raft at Six Flags Over Texas, US. The raft then got caught on an underwater pipe, which provided leverage for the rushing water in the ride to flip the boat over.

December 24, 1998

A heavy metal cleat fastened to the hull of the Sailing Ship Columbia at Disneyland Park, California, US, tore loose, striking one employee and two park guests. One of the guests, a 33-year-old man, died of a head injury.

June 17, 1987

A 19-year-old girl died after falling from the Lightnin' Loops shuttle loop roller coaster at the same New Jersey theme park.

July 7, 1984

A 46-year-old woman was riding the Rail Blazer roller coaster at Six Flags St Louis, US, when she was flung from the ride and fell 6.1m to her death.

May 11, 1984

Eight teenagers died when the Haunted Castle at Six Flags Great Adventure, New Jersey, US, was destroyed by fire.

January 3, 1984

A 48-year-old woman was killed when she was thrown from a Matterhorn Bobsled car at Disneyland Park, California, US, and struck by the next oncoming bobsled. The spot where she was killed is now called "Dolly's Drop" by castmembers.

August 29, 1981

In another tragedy at the Six Flags Great Adventure park, a 19-year-old girl chocked to death on the Rolling Thunder roller coaster.

August 16, 1981

A 20-year-old park employee fell to his death from the Rolling Thunder roller coaster during a routine test run also at the New Jersey theme park.

July 26, 1978

A man and his three nieces died at Six Flags over Mid America when their gondola fell from the cable of the Skyway.

February 5, 1978

A gondola car on Eagle's Flight traveling at Six Flags Magic Mountain, California, US, fell 15m to the ground. A pair of newlyweds were violently rocking the car back and forth, causing it to detach from the cable. The husband was killed, and his wife suffered serious injuries, including losing her legs.

July 8, 1974

An 18-year-old employee was crushed to death between a revolving wall and a stationary platform inside the America Sings attraction at Disneyland Park, California, US.

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