Disneyland place warning signs on ride cars

ANAHEIM, Calif. - In the aftermath of recent accidents, including one that left a 4-year-old boy with severe brain damage, Disneyland officials are placing safety warning signs on ride cars throughout the park.

Brandon Zucker suffered brain damage and other internal injuries on Sept. 22 when he was pinned beneath a carriage of a car on the Roger Rabbit Car Toon Spin and dragged about 10 feet.

Officials installed the new warning signs Thursday night, hours after a 15-year-old boy broke his foot and leg on the same attraction.

The signs were placed on the steering wheels of the ''taxicabs'' in the Roger Rabbit ride, which remains closed as state officials determine how the Thursday accident occurred. They warned passengers to stay inside the car and keep their arms and legs inside while the ride is in motion.

Thomas Girardi, attorney for the Zucker family, was happy about the signs but said Disneyland officials should have done something before ''since they knew about these problems.''

In April when a 13-year-old girl was injured after her foot wedged underneath a ''taxicab.''

''You would think they would have done something about it,'' Girardi said. ''You would think they would have fixed the ride.''

Disneyland spokeswoman Chela Castano-Lenahan disputed the claims and defended the park.

''Disneyland is a very safe place,'' she said. ''More than 21 million guests have ridden the Roger Rabbit attraction and we are only aware of one other incident with a 13-year-old girl who stepped off, and the unfortunate incident with Brandon.''

Castano-Lenahan would not comment on the new signs or any other safety measures until after the state finishes its investigation of the accidents on Roger Rabbit and Alice in Wonderland.

The theme park also recently added signs to the Big Thunder Mountain Railroad, where a La Jolla boy's foot was crushed between two train cars in 1998.

In an unrelated incident, a 14-year-old girl broke her leg shortly before noon Friday when she stepped out of her wheelchair to board Space Mountain and twisted her foot.

AP-WS-12-23-00 0531EST


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