An investigation has been launched after a girl was forced to jump off Australia’s ‘tallest travelling freefall ride’ while it was moving.
Holly Brown and her friend Ava visited Queensland’s Kilcoy Show on Saturday May 13th.
However, their fun day out at the fair soon turned into a nightmare when they sat down to go on the Mega Drop ride – which goes up to a height of about 30 meters before suddenly dropping at a speed of 130m per Hour.
As the ride was beginning, much to Holly and Ava’s horror, both girls realised their safety restraints had failed to close properly – Holly’s having swung open back over her head and Ava’s remaining still pressed close to her chest, but unlocked.
The pair – who were the only ones on the ride – had ridden it before, so were aware of the great heights it reaches at the top of the tower, only to then plummet back down to earth.
Holly was subsequently left with a horrible, split-second decision to make: to desperately cling onto the ride, or to jump off, down to the steel platform lying six meters – and growing – below.
According to Holly, the ride attendant was quick to see what happened and tried his best to grab onto the rising platform and help secure the safety restraints.
However, the 12-year-old told 9News the attendant slipped and fell three metres and so the only thing left he could do to help was shout at the girls to jump off.
Holly explained: “I knew what was going to happen. So I thought, ‘Well, I either jump and maybe I break a few bones or I go up and die.’
“So I was like, ‘You know what, breaking bones is better than losing my life.’ So I jumped.”
When she jumped, Holly thinks she ‘blacked out’ because she can’t remember it at all.
The next thing she recalls is being in ‘excruciating pain’ lying in her friend’s mum Danielle Snow’s lap.
Snow told 9News: “I reckon she would have been six to seven metres in the air, and the ride was still going up, when she jumped off it.”
But where was Ava?
Ava hadn’t leapt with Holly, and so was left stuck on the ride as it continued to rise.
Thankfully, the attendant managed to rush to the emergency stop button and stop the ride from going any further.
But the two girls couldn’t see if one other was OK, and so Ava was left in an ‘absolute panic’ unable to hear her mother’s ‘screams’ Holly had survived.
Holly suffered a lateral malleolus fracture in her right foot and was attended to by medical staff at the scene.
The incident is now being investigated by Queensland Workplace Health and Safety.
A spokesperson said, as per 9News: “Our inspectors and engineers attended the scene and are currently investigating.”
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