The U.S. Occupational Health and Safety Administration has issued a recommendation following its investigation into the death of a Disney employee over the summer. Mark Priest, 47, was injured and later died following a performance of Captain Jack’s Pirate Tutorial, a Pirates of the Caribbean show at the Magic Kingdom. OSHA recommended that Disney ensure employees who perform in new venues have an opportunity to rehearse on a new state before their first live performance. OSHA has chosen not to issue a safety-violation citation or fine Disney for Priest’s death. An investigation is still pending for the death of another Disney employee, Anislav Varbanov, 30, who died after breaking his neck rehearsing for the Indiana Jones Epic Stunt Spectacular at Disney’s Hollywood Studios.
Both deaths are tragic for the friends and families of both employees, but what is more tragic is that Disney is just getting a slap on the wrist for failing to protect the safety of its employees. The government needs to get tougher on Disney – a slap on the wrist is not enough. Disney needs to be fined, and reprimanded for its failure to ensure the safety of its employees.