Park Sued for Tot’s Roller-Coaster Death

     CHICAGO (CN) – A family that saw and felt a 3-year-old boy run over repeatedly sued the maker of the Python Pit roller coaster and Go Bananas amusement park.
     The Shehadi family sued Go Bananas LLC, E&F Miler Industries, Miler Coaster Fabrication, and Miler Coaster, in Cook County Court.
     Go Bananas runs an amusement park in Norridge, Ill., where it installed a Python Pit roller coaster, designed and sold by Miler Coaster, according to the complaint.
     “On April 2, 2011, at approximately 7:00 p.m., Suhad Shehadi, Zuhdi Shehadi, Ezledin Shehadi, and Elisa Shehadi were passengers on ‘the Python Pit roller coaster,'” the complaint states.
     The family occupied the two cars behind 3-year-old Jayson Dansby and his twin brother, according to the complaint.
     It states: “That as ‘the Python Pit roller coaster’ started in motion, Jayson Dansby became agitated and started screaming for his mother and for the ride to be stopped.
     “During the second lap around the track Jayson Dansby became freed from the safety harness of his car, and stood up in the car he was occupying so that he was facing the car in which Suhad Shehadi and her minor son Ezledin Shehadi were seated.
     “That Suhad Shehadi, Zuhdi Shehadi, Ezledin Shehadi, and Elisa Shehadi and several other patrons of ‘Go Bananas’ witnessed Jayson Dansby standing in the car he was occupying and started yelling for the staff at ‘Go Bananas’ to stop the ride.
     “‘The Python Pit Roller Coaster’ continued past the starting point for its third lap while Jayson Dansby was standing in the first care of the roller coaster facing the second car of the roller coaster despite the fact that several patrons including the plaintiffs were yelling for the ride to be stopped.
     “That Suhad Shehadi, Ezledin Shehadi, Zuhdi Shehadi, and Elisa Shehadi, all attempted to lean forward out of their cars to calm Jayson Dansby down and convince him to sit back down in his car.”
     But “during the third trip around the track, Jayson Dansby fell down in between the first car of ‘the Python Pit roller coaster’ and the second car of ‘the Python Pit roller coaster,'” the complaint states.
     It continues: “That at the time Jayson Dansby fell down in between the first and second car of ‘the Python Pit roller coaster,’ Suhad Shehadi, Ezledin Shehadi, Zuhdi Shehadi, and Elisa Shehadi were all in the zone of danger as they were all leaning far out of their cars attempting to assist Jayson Dansby and were themselves at risk of falling out of their cars and being injured by ‘the Python Pit roller coaster.’ …
     “Despite the duration and increased intensity of the screams to stop ‘the Python Pit roller coaster’ after Jayson Dansby fell, the ride continued past the starting point for its fourth lap around the track.
     “As ‘the Python Pit roller coaster’ started its fourth lap around the track, Zuhdi Shehadi saw a female employee of ‘Go Bananas’ who appeared to be the operator of the ride say, ‘where is the little boy.’
     “During the fourth lap around the track Suhad Shehadi, Ezledin Shehadi, Zuhdi Shehadi and Elisa Shehadi saw, heard, and felt the cars of ‘the Python Pit roller coaster’ roll over Jayson Dansby.
     “Despite the duration and increased intensity of the screams to stop ‘the Python Pit roller coaster’ after it initially rolled over Jayson Dansby, the ride continued past the starting point for its fifth and final lap around the track.
     “During the fifth and final lap around the track, Suhad Shehadi, Ezledin Shehadi, Zuhdi Shehadi, and Elisa Shehadi saw, heard, and felt the cars of ‘the Python Pit roller coaster’ roll over Jayson Dansby a second time.
     “It was only after the completion of the fifth and final lap that ‘the Python Pit roller coaster’ came to a stop.”
     Jayson died that day of his injuries, the Chicago Sun Times reported.
     The Department of Labor found no design or maintenance problems with the Python Pit roller coaster upon reinspection, but the owner and manager of Go Bananas, Jerrold Marks and James Hayes, were charged with violating the Carnival Rides and Amusement Safety Act for discrepancies in the park’s record keeping, according to the Sun Times.
     The Dansby family has a lawsuit pending against Go Bananas, alleging wrongful death.
     The Shehadi family seeks damages for negligence and emotional distress.
     They are represented by Steven Armbruster with the Vrdolyak Law Group.

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