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Florida lawmakers unveil framework for rider safety bill for amusement parks

Posted at 6:01 PM, Jul 20, 2022
and last updated 2022-07-20 18:01:25-04

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (WTXL) — Florida's agriculture commissioner and state lawmakers are unveiling the framework for a rider-safety-bill following the death of a teen at an Orlando amusement park earlier this year.

In March, Tyre Sampson fell to his death while riding ICON Park's Free Fall attraction.

An autopsy report showed the 14-year-old was almost 100 pounds over the ride's weight limit.

In Wednesday's news conference, Democrats called for a law that boosts operator training, warning signage and maintenance reporting; among other things.

The framework is not yet finalized.

"We want to be transparent. We want to show that we are working on things. We wanted to at least— for the family's sake, and ride safety— for people to see that we are actively working on things," Nikki Fried, Florida Agriculture and Consumer Services Commissioner said.

Rep. Geraldine Thompson, who is running for state Senate, said she would like to carry the bill during the next legislative session, which begins in March.

The policy will need the backing of the Republican majority to become law.

Thompson said the goal would be to make the bill effective on July 1st of 2023.