Roller Coaster Harness Blamed in Rider’s Death

United Press International

A woman killed in a 75-foot fall from a looping roller coaster at Six Flags-Great Adventure amusement park was not properly harnessed in her seat when the ride began moving, investigators said Thursday.

The victim, Karen Anne Brown, 19, of Chester, Pa., apparently was trying to secure herself underneath an overhead metal safety bar Wednesday when the “Lightnin’ Loops” roller coaster left the loading platform and headed downhill, throwing her to her death, investigators said.

No charges had been filed against either Great Adventure or any employees in connection with the accident, although the investigation was continuing, said Michael Murray, spokesman for the Ocean County prosecutor’s office.

“At this point, our investigation has indicated no criminal negligence, with the emphasis on criminal,” Murray said.

The coaster ride, which features two intertwined 85-foot-high loops that turn riders upside down, uses cars equipped with heavy metal U-shaped bars that are designed to lower over the head and shoulders of each rider. Brown was thrown out before her car turned over in the first loop, Murray said.