Last year, a New York tourist was paralyzed after riding one of Universal Orlando’s Volcano Bay‘s water slides. Now, court records from the injured tourist’s lawsuit show an additional 115 people have been injured on that same water slide.
Punga Racers, a fan favorite at Volcano Bay since it opened in 2017, welcomes several Guests throughout the day as they ride on mats down waterslides into a big catch pool. The official description reads:
A favorite among Waturi children, Punga Racers™ send single riders on a body slide down four lanes through underwater sea caves. Among Waturi children, one of the best loved legendary heroes is Punga, the playful son of Tangaroa, god of the sea and Mahuika, goddess of fire.
According to Orlando Sentinel, some of the guests who rode the water slide, Punga Racers, suffered scrapes or nosebleeds while others suffered more severe injuries including a concussion or neck whiplash. This was due to the fact that the riders rode head-first on mats down four water slides into the water pools. But, it wasn’t just Guests who were injured as two ride safety testers were also injured.
Orlando Sentinel reported that Universal spokesman Tom Schroder said in a statement Wednesday, “More than 1.5 million guests have experienced this ride, with Mr. Bowen’s injury being the single, reportable one. That said, we take every injury seriously and have a safety-first culture that places the safety of our guests and team members above everything else. When there is an injury of any kind, we immediately begin an investigation and review.”
“Our process is rigorous and detailed and there are often many opinions as we arrive at a conclusion or work to resolve an issue,” the statement continued. “We are confident in our process and in the safety of our rides.‘’
In a June 23 filing, Buckner wrote “As Universal works to reopen its parks by reassuring the public that the company takes safety seriously, these documents prove otherwise. And that is the real reason Universal is desperate to conceal them.”
Buckner declined to comment to Orlando Sentinel for this story.