Belfast Telegraph

Home News UK

Two children still in a serious condition after rollercoaster crash

Two children remain in a serious condition in hospital after a theme park rollercoaster crashed 20ft off its tracks.

Ten people were initially taken to hospital after the Tsunami ride derailed and hit the ground at M&D's amusement park at Strathclyde Country Park, Motherwell, North Lanarkshire, on Sunday afternoon.

Two boys, aged 11 and 12, are in a serious condition at the Royal Hospital for Children in Glasgow, one with chest, abdominal and leg injuries and the other with arm and hand injuries.

In total, six others remain in hospital including a 19-year-old man with a knee injury, a 14-year-old girl with chest injuries and an 11-year-old boy with head and leg injuries.

Among those already discharged from hospital was a 25-year-old woman who was walking past the rollercoaster when the carriage plunged to the ground.

Police Scotland said she was checked over and released without any injuries.

Officers are now investigating the crash with the Health and Safety Executive and engineers are inspecting the Tsunami.

Detective Inspector John Malcolm said: "This is a really serious incident that has affected many people visiting the theme park and our thoughts go out to those who have been injured.

"We have now launched a joint investigation with the HSE and our priority is to find out the cause of the incident.

"I would ask that anyone who witnessed the incident or indeed, anyone who may have video footage or photographs to get in touch with the dedicated enquiry team on 101."

HSE principal inspector Barry Baker said: "Our thoughts are with the children and adults who have been injured in this incident and I must give praise to the emergency services and members of the public who came to their aid so quickly yesterday.

"We have brought HSE specialists in mechanical engineering to the site this morning, to begin the process of finding out what caused the gondolas to come off the rails. HSE will work very closely with colleagues in the police as the investigation unfolds."

A teenager injured in the crash has said she thought she was going to die.

Katie McArdle, 19, said on social media she was discharged with a reported broken wrist while her boyfriend is said to have dislocated his knee.

Writing on Facebook, the college student said: "I have never been so scared in my entire life. Honestly thought I was going to die, sitting in that carriage upside down with everyone screaming.

"Turning round and not seeing William beside me was the worst.

"We are honestly so so lucky, there is definitely someone watching over us both. We are both still in shock and have a few injuries but just so lucky to be alive."

The ride was full when it came off the track and police, firefighters and paramedics rushed to the scene as several visitors posted images on social media appearing to show a mangled carriage on a pathway surrounded by dozens of people.

The grandfather of another victim praised doctors for saving his hand.

Thomas Campbell said Liam Boyle, 11, went through about eight hours of surgery.

Writing on Facebook, Mr Campbell said: "The good news is Liam's operation has been a success, they have saved his arm and hand, recovery will take a while but at least we know he's going to be alright, thanks for all the support much appreciated."

According to the M&D's website, the Tsunami rollercoaster can go at speeds of up to 40mph through corkscrew turns and loops.

It is not the first time M&D's has had problems with its rides, including Tsunami.

In July 2011, nine passengers, including children, were stranded for more than eight hours when it came to a halt 60ft above the ground.

In March this year, eight people had to be rescued by firefighters in a cherry picker after the Tornado rollercoaster stopped working about 20ft off the ground.

Daily News Headlines Newsletter

Today's news headlines, directly to your inbox.


From Belfast Telegraph