Flamingo Land has been fined £5,000 after a two-year-old boy fell through an unguarded hole in its Motion Master simulator ride.
The North Yorkshire, UK-based park was severely criticised by a judge at Scarborough Magistrates Court for failing to cover the hole despite carrying out safety checks on the ride. The boy slipped through the unguarded hole and fell 8 feet onto a concrete floor below the simulator - escaping with only minor injuries.
Motion Master had been operational for three weeks when the incident occurred in March 2008, but the park had failed to cover the two-feet square hole. The simulator had been purchased second-hand from another amusement park and then refurbished, but engineers had not covered the gap between the last row of seating and the ride's back wall.
According to Safety & Health Practioner Magazine, the child had been asked by staff to move to end of the back row during boarding, and fell through the hole as he did so. The park subsequently boarded over part of the hole, but were ordered by the Health and Safety Executive to install further material to fully cover it.
Flamingo Land pleased guilty to breaking the terms of the 1974 Health and Safety at Work Act, and was ordered to pay £3,277 costs in addition to the fine.