BARTOW — The parents of a 13-year-old boy who was seriously injured when he fell from a roller coaster at Cypress Gardens last month sued the theme park for negligence.
Martin Llamas of Orlando fell 10 to 12 feet onto the grass from the Triple Hurricane roller coaster on Feb. 25. The Polk County Sheriff’s Office said he had maneuvered out of the lap bar and was facing the cars behind him when he was thrown out of the coaster on a sharp turn.
But his parents, Publio Junco and Maria Cota, dispute witness accounts that their son was standing up in the car. They filed suit Friday, claiming Cypress Gardens failed to ensure the ride was safe, and failed to maintain and inspect it to prevent injury.
Cypress Gardens spokeswoman Lynn Wright said the park didn’t do anything wrong.
“We stand by the results of the completed investigations of state and local officials, which cleared the park of any negligence or error in this unfortunate accident,” Wright said.
An inspector with the Florida State Bureau of Fair Ride Inspection concluded there was no malfunction with the ride and the boy was properly restrained by the coaster’s lap restraint. The ride was reopened the day after the accident.
Llamas remains hospitalized in Tampa.