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Tower of Terror goes to trial

Walt Disney World: The lawsuit over a stroke allegedly suffered on the Disney's Hollywood Studios ride come to court

From Dan Babbitt
Posted April 17, 2010 at 2:47 PM
Marvin Cohen is bringing the Tower of Terror to trial because he claims that the attraction was the main cause of his stroke he suffered in 1998.

His lawyers are claiming the even though the attraction was working properly at the time but didnt have enough warnings and that Disney made an attraction that creates whiplash due to its succession of drops and ascents. They claim tha Disney ignored there own safety experts and put show ahead of safety.

Heres the full story from the Orlando Sentinel

I wont go on and on because I'm skewed already on this subject. I've riden this ride hundreds of times and came out with no problems but I would like to know what you guys think about this trial.


Comments in chronological order. Most recent at the bottom. Scroll down to respond.

From Derek Potter
Posted April 17, 2010 at 5:29 PM
Frankly I'm surprised that the suit wasn't settled. I would think that Disney fears bad press more than a frivolous lawsuit. Then again, I would get tired of dealing with these claims if I were them, so it wouldn't surprise me if they didn't bother with the plaintiff that much. The cost of trial is nothing to them, and maybe they want to set an example of some sort. Then again, a stroke is no small thing. If the plaintiff feels that strongly, then so be it. He's not without question in regards to his age and other potential health problems though. It will be near impossible for him to win. The only reason they got to trial was because they didn't go with the standard ride malfunction approach. They are questioning the overall safety of the ride itself....which is odd, considering it's given tens of millions of rides in it's several year existence. The fact that it went to trial surprises me even more given that information, and I would also love to know how they intend to prove their case.

The ride isn't dangerous. In fact, compared to the thrill rides in my neck of the woods, TOT is mechanically pretty tame.

It would also seem to me that Disney has more pressing matters to deal with, like bus drivers and overtime policies.

From Robert Niles
Posted April 17, 2010 at 8:48 PM
Personally, I find it difficult to envision how the plaintiff could win this case. There have been other incidents involving theme park attractions where I thought that a plaintiff could have made a strong case in front of a jury, but this is not one of those.

From James Rao
Posted April 18, 2010 at 11:42 AM
As much as I love this country, sometimes I really dislike its citizens.

From Bob Miller
Posted April 18, 2010 at 2:06 PM
^ Ditto

From Rob P
Posted April 19, 2010 at 12:50 AM
The litigious world that we now find ourselves living in really disappoints me on almost a daily basis.
It has opened an ever widening crack that allows every poisonous and negative element out to continually and systematically ruin what was, and should be, an exciting planet. We are restricted in very nearly everything we do and used to be allowed to do when we were kids. This is because we live in fear of being dragged through the law courts for not covering every angle of safety or it's information.
Once upon a time, as intelligent beings, we knew that jumping off a wall or diving into a pool or riding a coaster were activities that had their dangers and that we had to take responsibility for ourselves.
Nowadays everywhere , Disney included, is expected to cover every angle of safety and safety information. I think they do a pretty good job. If we took things to the Nth degree the parks would just be filled with signposts of doom and gloom. We may have to sign disclaimers before every ride.
I feel sorry for anyone who gets hurt on a ride but this person MUST have been aware of the nature of Tower of Terror and HAS to be reponsible for his /her actions.
I , like most people, have some medical issues but I make my choices . I know the risks and what I can and cannot ride.
I question anyone who visits a theme park and claims not to know the risks. If in any doubt DON'T ride it until you find out what it's all about.
I hope Disney do go to court over this. I don't think the publicity would be particularly negative. If this person wins the case then I do envisage even more stringent molly-coddling but I don't see myself , or , most right minded people, being dissuaded from riding Tower of Terror.
It would be just one more dollar in the bank for the lawyers.

From David Graham
Posted April 19, 2010 at 10:46 AM
Well said Rob. These stupid people lawsuits all really go back to the old lady who put the McDonalds hot cup of coffee between her legs and got burnt (imagine that), sued and won. I'd still love go back smack the h*ll out of that jury and what doors they have opened up for lawsuits like this, as Rob said, people have stopped taking responsibility for their own actions.

From Thomas Caselli
Posted April 20, 2010 at 5:03 PM
The lawsuit is ridiculous. There are thousands of thrill rides around the world and each one has warnings about riding it with different medical problems. Millions of people ride these rides each year and there are relatively few problems that happen because of the rides. If something happens to someone, that person should just figure that it was his own falt for riding the ride.

From Andrew Holden
Posted April 20, 2010 at 5:17 PM
To me, this looks like the old man saw one of those billboards that say, "Who can you sue?" and decided to try and make some money!

Those billboards drive me crazy!!!

From David Graham
Posted April 21, 2010 at 8:05 AM
Morgan and Morgan, sue the people I mean for the people lol

From Donna Tolliver
Posted April 21, 2010 at 8:55 AM
The plastic tub of cat litter I bought recently has a child safety warning on it, I kid (pun intended) you not. Warning diagram is an outline of a child trying to climb into it and it tipping over. My husband and I have been joking about these warning labels, especially the stick-figure diagrams, for years, but this is a new low -- a warning on a small plastic tub (it's like a small square bucket).

From Pyra Dong
Posted April 21, 2010 at 11:40 PM
I hope this guy doesn't win...
There could be numerous other reasons for his stroke-- the heat, stress, lack of exercise...

... or just the need to blame someone else

From rick stevens
Posted April 22, 2010 at 9:30 PM
Tower of Terror is such a mild ride. This person must have had a really bad underlying problem. I hope this one is tossed on merit. I would hate to see all of the problems that might arise from this one. I remember that the original Haunted Mansion had to be toned down for this reason. I think the lawyers outnumber the patrons 2 to 1!

From Jake Johnson
Posted May 31, 2010 at 8:20 PM
just saw in Orlando sentential website the jury sided with Disney on the tower of terror suit..

the plaintiff was going to ask for new trail.

sometime you just gota go on with your life.

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