After a 14-year-old fell some 25 feet from a gondola ride and onto the crowd below at Six Flags Great Escape in New York on Saturday, park officials said they hadn't uncovered any malfunction that would have precipitated her fall. Now police are saying much the same. Though the Post-Star reports police as of Monday morning hadn't interviewed the Delaware girl or her brother, who accompanied her on the ride, they believe "human error" is to blame.
While it remains unclear precisely what happened, the paper provides two scenarios: "It appeared that she was either not paying proper attention or was fooling around to slide underneath the bar." With her neck apparently stuck initially, she freed herself and let go.The crowd broke her fall, and it could have been a higher one: The paper reports that toward the end of the ride, the seats get a good deal higher off the ground. The Daily Gazette talks to Matthew Howard, who apparently bore the brunt of the teen's weight and fell to the ground as he did so. "God dropped an angel, and I caught her," he says. (Read more Six Flags stories.)