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Family of teen who died at Florida theme park says he was too heavy for ride

Relatives of an adolescent killed when he was thrown from a Florida amusement park experience final week mentioned he had been turned away from two different points of interest the identical evening due to his weight.

Tyre Sampson’s household is asking why attendants on the FreeFall experience at ICON Park in Orlando allowed him to get on the experience when he was about 50 kilos heavier than its revealed weight restrict.

“I would want for y’all to hurt his little feelings and tell him not to get on,” a cousin advised NBC affiliate WESH of Orlando. “And, see, his life would have been still here.”

The FreeFall ride at the ICON Park entertainment complex in Orlando, Fla., on Sunday.
The FreeFall experience on the ICON Park leisure advanced in Orlando, Fla., on Sunday.Phelan M. Ebenhack / AP

Relatives, together with his father, Yarnell Sampson, and a cousin, Shay Johnson, have mentioned Tyre Sampson was about 6 ft 5 inches tall and weighed 340 kilos.

Johnson advised WESH that {the teenager} referred to as her Thursday and advised her “he really wanted to ride the swing,” a experience ICON calls StarFlyer, the cousin mentioned.

But he was turned away due to his weight, she mentioned.

“Then he said he went to the SlingShot,” Johnson mentioned. “They told him he was too big for that. … Y’all did not let him get on those two, but y’all let him get on that one, being overweight.”

ICON Park spokesman William Wellons mentioned by e mail that the experience is owned and operated by SlingShot Group, which he mentioned is chargeable for hiring attendants or contractors.

“ICON Park is the landlord for the entertainment destination,” Wellons mentioned. “The SlingShot Group is responsible for the operations of the two thrill rides.” 

The FreeFall and SlingShot points of interest have been briefly closed, the proprietor of the rides mentioned.

“We are heartbroken by the loss of Tyre Sampson and absolutely devastated for his family and loved ones. We are fully cooperating with the authorities at the state and local levels who are investigating this tragic incident,” Ritchie Armstrong, the CEO of the Slingshot Group, mentioned in a press release.

On Monday, the Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services launched paperwork associated to its investigation, together with the experience’s operations handbook, which says 286.6 kilos is the utmost weight for every rider. It states that attendants have to pay explicit consideration to massive riders and switch them away if they do not match.

A state accident report launched Monday mentioned that magnets work to cease the experience and that “when the magnets engaged, the patron came out of the seat,” the operator said, according to the report. “Harness was still in a down and locked position when the ride stopped.”

When development began on the FreeFall in 2019, it was billed as the tallest drop tower experience on the earth, with a deliberate peak of greater than 400 ft.

On Tuesday, members of the family and well-wishers gathered on the park to gentle candles and drop balloons to honor the teenager, who the St. Louis Post-Dispatch mentioned was in Florida for a soccer camp over spring break.

A former coach, Arnaud Jones, described him as a straight-A student who was never in trouble. “Yes sir, sure ma’am to every little thing,” he advised NBC affiliate KSDK of St. Louis.

Elisha Fieldstadt, Anthony Cusumano and Nicole Duarte contributed.



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