Theme parks are a place where lawsuits are basically expected to happen from time to time. With many rides that are specifically designed to give you a physical thrill, things are going to happen, sometimes planned, sometimes not, that can potentially lead to injury and claims for damages. But sometimes lawsuits happen for other reasons. Disneyland is currently dealing with a suit over its Magic Key program and now an elderly woman has sued Universal Studios Hollywood parent company, NBCUniversal Media LLC, following her experience on a Harry Potter attraction. But she isn’t suing over what happened on the ride, but what happened in line.
According to KFIAM, Elizabeth Moore of Loomis, CA is suing NBCUniversal Media LLC for damages following an incident last year where, while waiting in line with her grandson for the Harry Potter and the Forbidden Journey attraction, a line divider allegedly fell on her hand, causing an injury that has resulted in ongoing pain.
The suit claims that NBCUniversal Media LLC is at fault because the theme park resort should have known the poles used to divide the line were not properly secured and that the danger of one of them falling was real.
Lawsuits regarding attraction injuries are far from uncommon. In the past we’ve seen lawsuits regarding injuries sustained on Epcot’s Frozen attraction. There was also a case a couple years ago where a woman was injured exiting a Space Mountain ride vehicle at Disneyland. Universal Orlando Resort was sued in 2020 following an incident where a man was paralyzed following an accident on a water slide.
In one way or another these are incidents where allegedly something went wrong with an attraction, or underlying conditions led to injuries on the ride. This is a significantly different situation as it involves what seems to be a random accident while standing in line. If the pole really did fall randomly and with no warning then certainly something went significantly wrong here. That’s not supposed to happen. Although, of course, there’s the possibility that the lawsuit isn’t telling the entire story.
We rarely hear of court battles surrounding these theme park lawsuits, because most of them end up getting settled and dealt with quickly. Odds are that will happen here. If there is any validity to the suit, NBCUniversal will likely arrange for an out of court settlement and give the women some compensation for her injury. It may be cheaper and easier to do that than to fight the suit. It’s unclear how much is being asked for by the lawsuit.
Hopefully this experience won’t sour anybody in visiting Universal Studios Hollywood in 2022, as both the California and Florida theme parks have some great stuff taking place this year.