Visitors Beware: Universal Orlando Issues Warning After String of Hospitalizations

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Multiple cars attempting to gain access to the Universal Orlando Resort parks

Credit: Universal Studios

When guests visit Universal Orlando Resort, they typically expect to have a magical and adventure-filled vacation and return home with memories and, likely, lots of money spent on souvenirs. That being said, there are times, like any vacation, when things can take a turn.

Guests walking into Universal Studios Florida
Credit: Universal

Sometimes, it is not all Butterbeer and chocolate from in the Wizarding World of Harry Potter, and guests at the theme park can fall ill. Luckily, Universal has on-hand staff at CityWalk, Universal Studios Florida, Islands of Adventure, and Volcano Bay to assist any guest who needs it. Sometimes, however, a guest may have injuries or a condition serious enough that an ambulance is needed.

The Orlando Sentinel recently revealed the injury report from the Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services. Depending on how long a guest is hospitalized after an injury (more than 24 hours), Universal must report what happened for public record, which is released every three months. These reports are for January through March, but please note, there may be essential details omitted in the following, as not every detail must be disclosed.

Multiple cars attempting to gain access to the Universal Orlando Resort parks
Credit: Universal Studios

The publication noted, “At Universal, “an altered state of consciousness” was reported from a 56-year-old male after experiencing Doctor Doom’s Fearfall, a drop ride at Islands of Adventure, and from a 38-year-old male after Transformers: The Ride — 3D, a motion-simulation attraction at Universal Studios. Both occurred in March.”

These two injuries seem to be the only two reported for hospitalization in the first three months of 2024, which is far better than the list compiled by Walt Disney World Resort. There is no status on how either guest has recovered or for how long they were hospitalized past the 24-hour mark.

Doctor Doom’s Fearfall is in Marvel Superhero Island, and is a simple drop ride.

Universal Orlando Resort, Marvel Super Hero Island at Islands of Adventure
Credit: Universal Orlando Resort

For over two decades, this iconic ride has dominated the Islands of Adventure skyline. But those imposing towers are more than just decoration. They’re the launching pad for a heart-pounding experience that catapults riders 185 feet into the sky, before plummeting them back down at speeds that will make even the bravest theme park enthusiasts cry out.

The ride certainly instills fears into the riders, with Doctor Doom telling you the Doombot to “Ignore safety warnings and set for maximum extraction!” As Universal notes, “Before your brain can even process the implications, Doom utters a final command, “Now, put your head against the headrest. I don’t want to miss a drop. Prepare to be terrorized.”

Transformers: The Ride — 3D is far less intense, as it is just a motion simulator ride.

The plot focuses on an intergalactic war between rivals, the Autobots and Decepticons, which spills over onto earth. Recruited by a specialized human agency, N.E.S.T., you find yourself thrust into the fight to protect humanity. Your mission: safeguard the AllSpark, a powerful artifact coveted by the Decepticons that holds the key to creating new life. But when the Decepticons launch a surprise attack on N.E.S.T. headquarters, your mission takes a volatile turn, erupting into an explosive battle for the fate of mankind.

Credit: Orlando Informer

Universal does have rider and safety warning signs for each attraction, “Ride Warning Signs can be found at the entrance of each ride to help you figure out which attractions are suitable for you. Please read all health and safety requirements for each attraction, as they are not all the same. You know your physical conditions and limitations. If you suspect your health could be at risk for any reason, or that you could aggravate a pre-existing condition of any kind, do not ride”.

Credit: Universal

Down the road, Disney World saw eight incidents, with four potentially linked to pre-existing medical conditions.

A 63-year-old guest fell exiting Kilimanjaro Safaris, while a 70-year-old fell entering Spaceship Earth. In January, a 32-year-old fainted on Space Mountain, and a 46-year-old experienced headaches and nausea after Tron Lightcycle / Run. Another January incident involved a 73-year-old losing consciousness on Spaceship Earth. Other incidents included a 68-year-old experiencing shortness of breath after Slinky Dog Dash (February) and a 44-year-old having a seizure following Frozen Ever After (March). Also, a 29-year-old guest losing consciousness after Summit Plummet at Blizzard Beach water park in February.

Once 2025 rolls around, Universal will have one more theme park to worry about reporting injuries from in Orlando, as Epic Universe will open alongside multiple hotels.

Have you ever been injured at Universal or Disney while on vacation? 

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