Ride at Iowa amusement park where boy died will never reopen

FILE – Visitors arrive at the Adventureland Park amusement park, July 6, 2021, in Altoona, Iowa. On Friday, Feb. 3, 2023, the managers of the Iowa amusement park said a ride that an 11-year-old boy died on in 2021 will never reopen. Adventureland’s general manager announced the decision in a letter posted on the park’s website. (AP Photo/Charlie Neibergall, File)

ALTOONA, Iowa (AP) — The ride at an Iowa amusement park where an 11-year-old Marion boy was killed in 2021 will never reopen, the park’s owners said.

Bill Lentz, Adventureland’s general manager, said in a letter posted on the park’s website Friday that after spending months reviewing the safety of the Raging River ride, officials decided to close it permanently.

⧉ Related article: Cedar Rapids parents suing Adventureland over son’s drowning death on raft ride

“The decision comes after months of examination of the ride, working closely with its manufacturer to identify what enhancements each would need to meet our operating standards,” Lentz said in the statement. “Based upon that review, the best path forward is to close Raging River, and focus on enhancing the Adventureland experience elsewhere.”

Michael Jaramillo died and his brother and father were injured on July 3, 2021, after their raft overturned and trapped them in the water. The ride uses a conveyor belt to move large circular rafts through rapids.

The park was sold to Palace Entertainment in the wake of the boy’s death and Lentz took over as general manager in 2022. Palace Entertainment is the U.S. subsidiary of Madrid-based Parques Reunidos.

The Jaramillo family filed a lawsuit against Adventureland and its former owners in June 2022, and a separate claim against the state of Iowa in September 2022. That lawsuit is tentatively set for trial next spring. The former owners have maintained that

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Iowa amusement park permanently closes ride boy died on

An Altoona, Iowa, amusement park has decided to permanently close a ride that an 11-year-old boy died on in 2021. Michael Jaramillo drowned on the Raging River ride at the Adventureland Resort when the raft carrying his family flipped over, according to the Associated Press.

Other family members were also injured and Michael’s parents sued the amusement park as well as the manufacturer behind the raft ride in 2022, according to court documents obtained by CBS News. The lawsuit is ongoing.

In a letter posted on the park’s website, General Manager Bill Lentz announced the ride would close.

“We implemented changes in our operations throughout the resort, always with an emphasis on safety as the most important element,” Lentz wrote. “On that note, I want to share that we have decided to permanently close the Raging River attraction. The decision comes after months of examination of the ride, working closely with its manufacturer to identify what enhancements each would need to meet our operating standards.”

The “beloved log ride,” will be succeeded by “a next-generation super flume ride” called the Draken Falls, Lentz said.

In the Jaramillos’ lawsuit, the family claims the park continued to operate on the day of the accident and that the park had failed properly maintain and repair rides, including the Raging River, for years, according to the AP.

At the time, Adventureland Park officials said in a statement to CBS News that the ride was closed during the investigation. “Adventureland is saddened to learn of the passing of one Guest involved in the Raging River accident on the evening of 7/3/21,” officials said in the statement.

When the incident happened, the ride had just reopened to the public for the first time since 2020 and underwent a full inspection first, park officials said,

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