Deconstruction of The Orlando Free Fall Where Tyre Sampson Lost His Life Will Begin Next Week

The 430-foot drop tower at ICON Park, where 14-year-old Tyre Sampson lost his life back in March, will start being taken down next week, according to the Orlando Sentinel.

What’s Happening:

  • The Orlando Free Fall is the 430-foot drop tower at ICON Park where 14-year-old Tyre Sampson fell and died last March.
  • Many people wanted the ride to be removed, and that process will begin next week.
  • The teen’s mom, Nekia Dodd, is relieved the ride will be taken down before the one year anniversary of her son's death on March 24, lawyer Michael Haggard said in a statement. She has pushed for it to be dismantled since her son died but hopes its removal "does not remove the memory of this tragedy," he said.
  • "Ms. Dodd remains focused on real change in the oversight and operation of thrill rides and accountability by any party involved in failing to keep theme park guests safe," Haggard said. "It is a part of Tyre’s legacy, a legacy that can never be stripped down."
  • A lawyer representing ride operator Orlando Slingshot, Trevor Arnold, said "the company hired amusement business Ride Entertainment to coordinate the Free Fall’s deconstruction. A crane will arrive next week to start taking the Free Fall apart."
  • "That activity is expected to continue into the following week because of the large size of the ride," Arnold said in a statement. "We hope to have the ride fully deconstructed before the anniversary of Tyre Sampson’s tragic death, and we will continue to work in that direction and give timeline updates as they are available."
  • Initially, Orlando Slingshot denied the Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services’ allegations, but they settled last month, paying a $250,000 fine and also agreeing that their ride would never operate again.