Primeval Whirl to Reopen This Weekend, Disney Cited for Safety Violations
After staying closed through the summer following the tragic death of maintenance worker Russell Roscoe, Disney has announced that the Animal Kingdom attraction Primeval Whirl is expected to reopen this weekend. The Walt Disney World attraction originally closed in January for refurbishment.
On March 13, tragedy struck when Roscoe was killed by one of the ride’s vehicles while performing a “wet test” on the attraction. Following the incident, OSHA has cited Walt Disney World for safety violations.
Fined $69,000 in total by OSHA, Walt Disney World was issued a “serious” citation because “the employer did not furnish employment and a place of employment which were free from recognized hazards that were causing or likely to cause death or serious physical harm to employees,” as well as because protective equipment was not used. OSHA also issued a “repeat” citation because there were no guardrails installed where Roscoe was working, a violation that Disney has faced charges for in the past with regards to the monorail and the Star Tours attraction at Disney’s Hollywood Studios.
Disney has not made public yet whether they will challenge OSHA’s safety report, but the company assures that it has made necessary safety enhancements to the attraction, and deem it ready to reopen to the public this weekend. Says Disney spokesman Bryan Malenius:
“We have conducted a thorough internal review of the incident and have implemented several safety enhancements to Primeval Whirl, which address the concerns raised by OSHA.”