A 10-year-old boy has died on the ‘world’s biggest waterslide’ at a park in the U.S.
He was identified as Caleb Thomas Schwab, the son of Republican member of the state legislature Scott Schwab.
In a statement, Scott and his wife said: “Since the day he was born, he brought abundant joy to our family and all those he came in contact with.”
They asked for privacy as their family grieved.
Police initially said the victim was 12-years-old, but Clint Sprague, a pastor who is acting as a spokesman for the family, said Caleb was 10.
The 168-foot tall ride called Verruckt at the Schlitterbahn Waterpark in Kansas City, can reach speeds as fast as 70mph, The Independent reports.
Spokeswoman for the park, Winter Prosapio, said the park would be closed on Sunday and Monday as a result of the accident, with authorities continuing their investigation into the death.
— ABC World News Now (@abcWNN) August 8, 2016
We are saddened to share that a young boy died on Verruckt this afternoon. Given that safety is our first priority, we have closed our Kansas City park and we have closed the ride pending a full investigation. Our thoughts and prayers are with the family during this difficult time.
No further details have been made available about the circumstances of his death.
The park’s website claims that Verruckt is the largest waterslide in the world and is taller than the Statue of Liberty.
The riders, who must be over 54 inches tall, have to climb up hundreds of steps before reaching the top of its 17-storey height.
It opened back in July and was delayed in its launch, to allow additional safety tests to be carried out.
A spokesperson at the time said:
A lot of the adjustments we were making have been made. Nobody’s really done this before, so we’ve got to kind of expect the unexpected.
Our thoughts are with the Schwab family during this difficult time.