Boy’s panicked final message to friends before falling from 130-metre fun park ride

The thrill ride descent at ICON Park, a multifaceted amusement park in the Orlando region, led to the devastating loss of a 14-year-old adolescent from the United States.

Tyre Sampson, a 14-year-old from St Louis, Missouri, plummeted from the Orlando FreeFall attraction on Thursday evening.

The Orange County Sheriff’s Office stated that the ride is referred to as the tallest freestanding drop tower in the world.

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A video circulating on social media shows an incident in which a person falls from their seat into the ride’s drop tower as the vehicle decelerates before it reaches the ground.

It demonstrates a figure soaring out of the attraction prior to touching down on the surface.

Yarnell Sampson, the father of Sampson, informed US media that his son sensed something was amiss as soon as the ride started. Credit: Twitter

“The Sun obtained audio recordings of emergency service calls where the caller alleges that the staff of the ride did not fasten his seatbelt.”

“I am unaware of the location from which he fell,” the caller stated.

“The staff at ICON park failed to fasten the seatbelt on him.”

Another reporter informed emergency services that Tyre Sampson had passed away.

The caller stated, “There is no pulse, there is no pulse, I have checked his breathing and he is not breathing. There is blood everywhere, his face has gone pale. He is deceased, he is deceased, he is deceased.”

A video circulating on social media shows an incident in which a person falls from their seat into the ride’s drop tower as the vehicle decelerates before it reaches the ground. Credit: Twitter

Yarnell Sampson, the father of Sampson, informed US media that his son sensed something was amiss as soon as the ride started.

WOFL-TV informed Yarnell Sampson, “And he was like ‘what’s happening?'” Do you understand what I mean, he was like ‘this object is in motion.’ That’s when he started to feel uneasy when the ride began.

On the ride, sitting next to him, his two best friends received a message before his son started to panic, he said.

“That’s when he began to panic,” Mr Sampson stated.

I love them, so please tell your daddy and mommy that you can safely make it down if I don’t know the man. ‘And I don’t know him, so he was explaining it to his next friends.

“In order for him to make such a statement, he must have experienced some kind of emotion.”

Tyre was transported to a medical facility, where he passed away due to his injuries, as stated by the sheriff’s department.

Specific information regarding the causes of the decline was not immediately disclosed.

Sheriff John Mina expressed, “it seems to be a dreadful calamity” based on a preliminary inquiry, and the Sheriff’s team will ascertain if the occurrence was unintentional or deliberate, in Orange County.

Passengers strapped into seats for drop

The FreeFall is a 130m tower and ride that can accommodate up to 30 riders at the top of the structure, with a vehicle encircling the tower.

The vehicle reaches its top speed of 120 km/h (75 mph) while reaching speeds of nearly 400 feet (120m) above the ground, with a forward tilt of 30 degrees, according to Park’s ICON website.

The attraction debuted around Christmas last year, the company stated.

Aerial view of The Wheel at ICON Park, Orlando Star flyer swing, amusement park ride in Florida. Credit: Jeff Greenberg/Jeffrey Greenberg/Universal Imag

CNN acquired a safety examination document, which stated that the attraction was permitted to commence operation prior to successfully completing a safety inspection in December.

The document from the Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services indicated that the drop tower passed inspection on December 20, 2021, with no deficiencies listed in the report.

According to the department, the FDACS was scheduled to inspect the ride again in June, halfway through the permit year.

The FreeFall is a 130m tower and ride that can accommodate up to 30 riders at the top of the structure, with a vehicle encircling the tower. Credit: CNN

FDACS also mentioned that it was the responsibility of the owner/operator to examine the amusement ride before commencing operations each day.

Spectrum News 13, a CNN affiliate, informed a representative from the ride’s operating company that the young boy was safely fastened in the seat of the attraction.

John Stine, the sales and marketing director of the Slingshot Group, which manages the ride and two other attractions in the park, informed Spectrum News 13 that they are currently conducting an inquiry. This is the reason why all necessary measures and safety protocols have been implemented before resuming operations on the ride. Therefore, based on the information available at present, this is our current understanding. (He was properly fastened into the seat) Indeed.

Close up view of the Orlando Free Fall at ICON Park on Friday, after Tyre fell to his death. Credit: Willie J. Allen Jr./AP

In a CNN interview, Mr. Stine expressed the company’s deep sorrow regarding Sampson’s passing.

“We are deeply saddened by the unfortunate incident involving this young visitor of ours,” Mr. Stine informed CNN on Friday.

The company stated that it was working closely with the officials and the sheriff’s office on a thorough investigation. The ride has been closed until further notice while the incident is being investigated.

“Currently, the least of our concerns is getting the ride functioning,” Mr Stine expressed.

We want to find out what happened to this young man and ensure the safety of both our employees and our guests is of utmost importance to us.

Mr Stine stated that there had never been any issue with the descent tower attraction.

“We’ve been functioning for nearly three months. And it’s performed exceptionally well. And this is what’s so baffling,” he stated.

ICON Park released a statement saying a “tragedy occurred last night at the Orlando FreeFall and our hearts are heavy with sadness”.

“According to the statement, the owner of Park ICON is fully cooperating with the authorities, and we can assist with everything that needs to be done.”

Honour roll student

According to his father, Tyre Sampson was a high-achieving student and a hopeful football player, as stated in an interview with CNN.

“According to his father, Tyre was visiting Orlando with his soccer team during spring break.”

Sampson the elder stated, “Tyre was a kind-hearted and generous individual who would willingly offer his shirt to anyone in need,” said Sampson the elder. He was a very good young man, and his son was a gentle giant, resembling a large teddy bear.

Sampson was an honour roll student and an aspiring football player, his father told CNN. Credit: Facebook

With tears held back, Mr Sampson informed CNN that he watched the footage of his son’s passing on Facebook.

“I observed the video of my son falling down, and I couldn’t comprehend (it). My life came to a stop,” Mr Sampson stated.

“I desire to ascertain the true events,” he appended. “You comprehend, you are aware, the reason behind the sudden departure of a 14-year-old adolescent with a promising future from our midst.”

Parents hire attorneys

Tyre’s parents have retained lawyers following the incident and are looking for individuals who can provide testimony.

On Saturday, lawyers Ben Crump and Bob Hilliard stated that they had been individually employed by the parents of the boy.

The lawyers requested that anyone who witnessed anything to get in touch with them.

“This family is devastated and grief-stricken by the loss of their son,” Crump expressed.

Needless to say, his family is absolutely devastated. This young man was an aspiring athlete and a kind-hearted person who cared about others. He was also an honor roll student, which every parent hopes for.

First and foremost, these national amusement parks have the right to expect families to prioritize safety and ensure the well-being of their children, while also generating millions of dollars.