Australia’s Dreamworld closes down Thunder River Rapids ride

Canberra, Nov 9 (IANS) Australia’s Dreamworld has permanently closed down the Thunder River Rapids ride which claimed the lives of four individuals at its theme park in the Gold Coast last month.

The decision was made out of respect towards the four individuals who lost their lives from the tragic event, Deborah Thomas, Chief Executive and Managing Director of Dreamworld’s parent company Ardent Leisure, said in a statement on Wednesday.

“The closure of the ride is the only respectful and appropriate course of action,” Xinhua news agency quoted Thomas as saying.

Thomas also added that an independent expert engineering firm has already begun an external review of all Dreamworld and Whitewater World rides and related operating systems.

“In addition to these reviews, Dreamworld remains committed to working closely with the Workplace Health and Safety Queensland team,” she added.

“No ride at Dreamworld will operate until the Workplace Health and Safety Audit has been completed and unless it passes the multi-level internal and external review process,” Thomas said.

Thomas added that the victims families would be invited to help create a fitting and permanent memorial to their loved ones.

The tragedy occurred on October 25 when the water-raft ride flipped backwards — killing all four.

Dreamworld, Australia’s largest theme park with over 40 rides and attractions, including five roller coasters, has been shut since the incident on the advice of the Queensland police with no signs of when it would be re-opened.