The very mention of Disney World is enough to light up the eyes in any child familiar with the legendary studio's films. Disney World is a theme park associated with the media company of the same name, and is an immensely popular vacation spot for families all around the world, especially those with younger children. The theme park itself is often advertised with evocations of magic and fantasy, and as such, is seldom thought of as a place of danger. Unfortunately, tragedy has struck the famed theme park in Orlando, Florida.
Danger Lurking In The Seven Seas Lagoon
Earlier in the month, a family was on vacation from Nebraska at Disney World, in an area of the park known as the Seven Seas Lagoon. This area is a man-made lake, located just nearby the Magic Kingdom, a popular tourist spot, and also Disney World's flagship attraction. The "lagoon" is primarily used for boat and ferry services between the park itself and the many hotel resorts. Many of these resorts have shorelines that border the lake, that some guests may utilize, though swimming is prohibited. The lake, although man-made, has attracted some Florida's native wildlife, including fish, snakes, turtles, and alligators.
The family was at one of the resorts in the shoreline area of the lake. Their son, a two-year-old, was playing in the water when he was attacked and dragged under the lake by an alligator. He was playing in water no more than two feet deep. The boy's father and a nearby lifeguard tried to fight off the gator, but they could not prevent the alligator pulling the boy under.
What happened next was an intensive 16 hour search for the child. The search involved the capture and examination of 5 alligators from the lake. Finally, divers in the lake located the child, nearby the area where the incident occurred. Unfortunately, the child did not survive the injuries from the attack.
In the wake of the incident, the family has opted to avoid discussing it, and to remain in mourning. Disney World on the other hand has not released an official statement. Although no statement has been released, the areas under search have remained closed. On top of this, an official from Florida state police, along with another member of the state's wildlife agency will begin investigating the posted signs around the lagoon area. At the time of the incident, the signs simply said "no swimming," though there was no posted reason why no one should be swimming in the lake. An anonymous Disney representative was reported to have said that the company would be reviewing the signs in the future. New signage could warn tourists and could possibly prevent an unfortunate accident like this from occurring in the future.
If you or a loved one has been injured, you may have a case. Contact attorneys Gilman and Bedigian today.