Altoona, IA

1 Dead and 3 Critically Injured: Raft Overturns on Amusement Park Ride


In a freak accident at Adventureland Park in Altoona, Iowa, on Saturday, July 3, 2021, one person has been killed and a total of four riders were transported to the local hospital after suffering injuries relating to an accident on the Raging River water ride.

At approximately 7:35 p.m. on July 3, the raft flipped over with six passengers inside. Thankfully, the Altoona fire department was on site and responded immediately.

In a statement, Adventureland Park said the ride had just passed inspection on July 2, 2021, and "was found to be in good working order" despite the accident.

The theme park released a response to the news of one victim's death related to the ride disaster: "Adventureland is saddened to learn of the passing of one Guest involved in the Raging River accident on the evening of 7/3/21."

The Des Moines Register reports that this isn't Adventureland Park's first fatal accident involving the water attraction. In 2006, a 68-year-old employee was helping riders exit the raft at the end of the ride. He fell onto the conveyer belt that propelled the rafts and suffered life-threatening injuries, including a fractured skull. He was identified as Steve Boother and died four days after his initial injury at the park.

Upon review of the company's website on July 5, 2021, at 11:39 a.m. EST, it appears Adventureland's facilities are open to the public.

The Adventureland Facebook page made the following public post at 10:17 p.m. on July 3, 2021:

"At approximately 7:35pm on 7/3/21 a boat on the Raging River ride overturned with 6 riders on it. 4 guests were transported to a local hospital with injuries, 3 critical and one minor.

Altoona Fire and Police were on property and responded immediately. We want to thank them as well as Des Moines, Ankeny, Bondurant, Pleasant Hill and Delaware Township Emergency Services for their fast response.

The ride had been inspected on 7/2/21 and was found to be in sound working order. It will remain closed for a thorough inspection.

Our thoughts are with the affected families at this time."

Their most recent Facebook post came just 12 hours ago on Sunday, July 4, 2021, at 11:31 p.m.:

"Adventureland is saddened to learn of the passing of one Guest involved in the Raging River accident on the evening of 7/3/21. This investigation is ongoing and the ride remains closed. Adventureland is working closely with both the State and local authorities, and would like to thank them again for their efforts. At this time, we ask for your thoughts and prayers for the Guest and their family, as well as for our team members who were onsite."

It appears the Raging River ride will remain close during the ongoing investigation of the ride's safety and stability.

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