Yet Another Disneyland Death

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Disneyland's first fatality would take place on the Matterhorn on May 15, 1964, when a 15 year-old kid tried to stand up near the ride's peak. He didn't know his seat was unbuckled by his friend when he lost his balance and fell to the concrete pad below causing a fractured skull, broken ribs, and numerous ruptured organs. Though he survived the initial fall, the boy's brain would eventually begin hemorrhaging after Disneyland employees rushed him to the hospital. It was too late however as the young boy would die from his injuries three days later. The boy's parents filed an unsuccessful law suit soon after.

In 1971, a fire broke out on a section of the Matterhorn's track just as a family's sled was racing along the rails. The family shot through the blaze with 5-foot-high flames engulfing both sides of their car. The couple inside was doused with a greasy substance that caused burns and stung their eyes. The ride's sprinkler system eventually doused the fire, the cause of which Disney officials were never able to determine. They filed a suit which awarded them $1,000 for the medical expenses related to their injuries.

In the early 1970's, an employee fell from one of the Matterhorn's bobsled's as she was leaning out of the car with a bent coat hanger to retrieve a guests's wig that had blown off. Though the act was common practice at the time, employee Cathy Davis unfortunately leaned too far out of the sled as it violently rounded a corner and fell out the back of the sled. She plunged 50 feet from the mountain's center without striking a single support or piece of track landing in a pile of dirt where she broke both shoulders, some ribs and her pelvis. Miraculously she survived.

Another person lost her life on the Matterhorn in 1984 when a 47 year-old woman vacationing from Fremont, Ca would fall to her death from a sled as it crossed a flat bridge on its way to a cave on the mountain's A side. Dolly Regene Young fell from the bobsled onto her back in the middle of the track where she was struck by an oncoming sled. The ride immediately shut itself down. When employees found the lady, she was completely covered by the sled with only her legs protruding from beneath, which they said looked like the Wicked Witch under Dorothy's house. Investigators found her seatbelt unfastened in her seat. it is believed she unbuckled herself to attend to her child and lost her balance. Young's family filed a $5 million suit against the theme park but settled minutes before it was to go to trial for an undisclosed amount.

Another incident was discovered when a bobsled exited the Matterhorn with an elderly gentleman slumped over his two granddaughters in the seat. Park operators eventually learned that the man had suffered a heart attack and died during the ride.

In a May 2014 incident, a Disneyland employee slipped and fell from the platform area while working on the loading dock of the Matterhorn attraction. The ride was temporarily closed while rescue personnel attended to the victim, but it was later determined that the woman received only minor injuries which were treated in a local hospital. The ride was allowed to continue operation a few hours later.

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