In a recent tragic theme park injury a 21 year old Disney employee was killed while operating a Monorail that collided with another Monorail in the Magic Kingdom in Orlando. After the crash the NTSB took jurisdiction and began its own investigation into the crash. Finally we will have some independent evaluation and oversight of the safety procedures at the big Florida theme. We have discussed many times in this blog that the theme parks in Florida have minimal oversight or independent governmental inspection of their safety. Again, why should the big three theme parks that cater to millions of residents and tourists be subject to less governmental safety oversight than is provided to the local County Fair?
In addition to the lack of governmental regulation, Florida has civil laws that bend over backwards to favor the theme parks over consumers. As an example, take the law of Common Carriers. Legally a common carrier is subject to an extremely high duty of care, that of a very careful person. As they should, after all, by offering to transport passengers for a fee they are subjecting them to the very real dangers of high speed traffic. In California, the theme parks are considered common carriers and subject to the high duty of care. Not so in Florida. Here the theme park transport systems and rides are not considered to be operated as common carriers and are not subject to the very careful person standard. Instead, the theme parks get away with the same standard of care in operating the transport systems and rides as the everyday motorist. Surely one would expect these large operations to be held at least to the same standard of care as, say, a Greyhound bus. Sadly they are not.
Perhaps with the intervention now of the Federal Government we can get some oversight and safety nets in place at the big parks.