Man dies after falling off roller coaster
AGAWAM, Massachusetts (AP) -- A 55-year-old man with cerebral palsy died Saturday when he fell out of a roller coaster at an amusement park, according to park officials and a newspaper report.
Stanley J. Mordarsky of Bloomfield, Conn., fell out of the Superman Ride of Steel roller coaster as it was approaching the end of its run at the Six Flags New England amusement park, park officials said.
"All of a sudden people started screaming, 'Stop the ride, stop the ride,' someone has fallen off," eyewitness Sara Syez told WHDH-TV in Boston.
"They finally stopped the ride and it was extreme panic and we looked and all the people in the cars were crying ... and we looked over to the side and there was a gentleman laying by the fence."
Mordarsky was pronounced dead 45 minutes later at a local hospital, the park said.
The victim's 82-year-old mother, Germaine Mordarsky, told The Hartford Courant her son had cerebral palsy and used a scooter for transportation. She said her son liked to visit the park 90 miles west of Boston two or three times a year.
"I can't understand why they would let him on a ride like that in the first place. He was so sickly and handicapped. I just can't believe it," she said.
Park spokeswoman Mary Ann Burns said there are ride requirements to ensure safety, and guidelines for the disabled, The Courant reported.
She would not comment further.
The ride was closed immediately and park officials, police and the state are investigating. It was not known late Saturday what caused the accident.
Park officials said the roller coaster had been inspected Saturday morning and was certified for operation by state certified inspectors before the park's season opening on April 17.
"Some people create with words, or with music, or with a brush and paints. I like to make something beautiful when I run. I like to make people stop and say, "I've never seen anyone run like that before." It's more then just a race, it's a style. It's doing something better then anyone else. It's being creative." -Steve Prefontaine