Theme park worker plunges 200ft to death after falling from world’s tallest swing ride

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A theme park worker plunged to his death after falling around 200 feet from the world’s tallest swing ride during a routine safety check.

Jacob David Kaminsky had climbed around halfway up the StarFlyer at ICON Park in Orlando, Florida, when he tragically fell, according to reports.

The employee, aged 21, was performing a daily check at around 7.40am on Monday, prior to the park opening to the public, a Orange County Fire Rescue spokesperson told WKMG.

Mr Kaminsky – named by Orlando County officials on Monday after next of kin had been informed – was pronounced dead at Orlando Regional Medical Center.

He is said to have struck a platform as he fell and gone into cardiac arrest.

Theme park officials told the news station they’re working alongside the Occupational Safety and Health Administration, as well as police as the investigation continues.

StarFlyer’s Director of Marketing and Sales John Stine said: “It’s a shock and we’re saddened by it. Anytime there is an injury or something of this nature, it’s extremely sad.

“But we’re holding up and supporting each other.”

Ashley Gipson, a spokesperson for Orange County Fire Rescue, was reported to have said that “there are some discrepancies in how far the fall was”.  

According to reports, in 2018 there was a communication issue relating to a seat release on the ride but Department of Agriculture records show no previous violations.

The attraction remains closed.

In a tribute to Mr Kaminsky, coaster installers Rocky Mountain Construction said: “Jake was an exceptional young man, loved roller coasters and took pride in his work.

“We have never lost one of our own before….our guys go into work everyday knowing the dangers of climbing at heights, erecting these amazing creations for the world to enjoy.

“But, when tragedy strikes, it is a hard pill to swallow. To his family of whom we have never met… you raised a very hard working, determined, responsible, honest young man.

“You should be very proud. We send you our sincere condolences and know that you are in our thoughts and prayers.”

According to RMC, the firm originally hired Mr Kaminsky to work on upcoming hybrid roller coaster Iron Gwazi at Busch Gardens in Tampa Bay, Florida.

However, he was temporarily let go in March due to the coronavirus pandemic, but returned in July to complete the build.

He had previously worked at SeaWorld.

Family friend Cheryl Wessely has set up a Gofundme page to raise money for his family.

She described Mr Kaminsky as having been “born a roller coaster enthusiast”.

“From a young child he would spend hours in his basement constructing complex coasters with K’Nexs. 

“It was only natural that he landed a job in the field of building them.” 

Ms Wessely said Mr Kaminsky’s family are from Chicago and need to pay to bring his body home for the funeral.

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