BUFFALO, N.Y. (AP) – A settlement has been reached in the wrongful-death lawsuit filed against a western New York amusement park by the family of a double amputee Iraq veteran killed when he fell out of a roller coaster.
The Buffalo News reported Tuesday that the settlement reached by lawyers for Darien Lake Theme Park and Resort and James Hackemer’s family was for a seven-figure amount. David Brock, an attorney with the Buffalo law firm representing the park, said he couldn’t comment on the amount because the settlement called for keeping the figure confidential.
Brock confirmed that Hackemer’s two young daughters, ages 3 and 4 at the time of the July 2011 accident, are the beneficiaries of the settlement
“Everyone is kind of happy to have this behind us,” Brock told The Associated Press on Tuesday. “Everyone is able to kind of move on.”
Denis Bastible, a lawyer with the Buffalo firm that represented Hackemer’s family, also said he couldn’t comment on the amount of the settlement, which was approved by a U.S. District Court judge last Wednesday.
“It’s going to secure the future of these two girls, who are 4 and 6, throughout their life,” Bastible said.
Hackemer was an Army sergeant when he lost both legs to a roadside bomb in Iraq in 2008.
On July 8, 2011, the 29-year-old was at Darien Lake in Genesee County with his family when he fell out of a car on the Ride of Steel coaster, landing on the ground about 150 feet below.
Hackemer wasn’t wearing his prosthetic legs when he got onto the ride. Investigators said he came out of his seat and its restraints on the last and second-highest of three hills on the coaster, which reaches speeds in excess of 70 mph and whose highest peak is 208 feet. The veteran struck the front of the eight-car train and fell about 150 feet, landing on a grassy area.
State officials determined operator error was to blame for the accident. Investigators said park workers didn’t follow rules posted at the ride’s entrance, which require that riders have both legs.
Information from: The Buffalo News,
(Copyright 2013 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)
- Skin Cancer in Arizona: Stats, facts and new immunotherapy drugs making strides
- Caring Crisis: Rising tide In Alzheimer’s disease leads to shortage of caregivers
- Distracted walking injuries end up not so funny
- Scary situations: 5 quick tips before you let a contractor in your home
- Four ways telemedicine is changing the health care industry
- 5 mistakes homeowners make in the spring
- Three rivers run through it: Exploring Arizona's waterways
- Smart home basics: things you need to know to get started
- 5 Surprising things causing back pain
- Arizona agriculture is a $17.1B industry
- Timeline: Arizona's roots in brewing history
- 5 reasons to love the D-backs this season
- Tips for taking your home entertainment experience to the backyard
- Tech-related injuries your parents never experienced
- Workers comp: Signs your co-worker could be a fraud
- Who's the real founder of America's pastime?
- Epidemic rising? What you need to know about Alzheimer's in Arizona
- 5 unforgettable Wooden Award winners
- Family and hard work are keys to success of modern dairy farmers
- Genetic testing could hold answers for colon cancer survival
- Cold beers and baseball: A beer lover's guide to Spring Training
- Telecommuting: 5 tips to make it work for employers and employees
- See how top CFOs feel about economic growth in the Valley
- Migraine myths that keep patients from effective treatments
- Here’s why Gaydos went tankless with his water heater
- Bocce ball and basketball: How you can help Arizona's Special Olympics athletes
- Tips on building the best wine room in Arizona
- Avoid the nightmare: 6 tips to choose a great contractor
- Breast cancer: Improved testing and treatments means more survivors
- Failed back surgery: New hope for patients living in pain