The parents of 10-year-old Hailey Lynn McMullen, who was killed after she was thrown from an amusement ride in Cumberland County, New Jersey, have sued the manufacturers and operators of the ride alleging they knew for many years that the ride could be deadly.
McMullen died October 12th, 2019, just an hour after she was thrown from the “Xtreme Super Sizzler” at the Harvest Festival in Deerfield Township in Cumberland County, authorities said.
Christopher and Amanda McMullen (Hailey’s parents) say in the lawsuit that the ride’s original product literature stated the ride was not recommended for small children, according to the suit filed in Superior Court of Middlesex County. The suit names Colorado-based manufacturer Wisdom Rides of America and Skelly’s Amusements of Gloucester County, which has operated the same ride at the Middlesex County Fair since 1998, as well as business associates of both companies.
In 2006, after a series of ejections on the “Xtreme Super Sizzler,” California officials issued a seatbelt mandate for all Sizzler rides, according to the suit.
Dennis Marconi of Trenton, an attorney for Skelly’s, said Wednesday that seatbelts are not required on the ride in question and added that the ride had passed state inspections. Marconi said there are different types of “Sizzler” rides and that litigation will show California mandated seatbelts on a different type of ride.
Wisdom Rides did not immediately return calls on Wednesday seeking comment.
The McMullens are asking the New Jersey State Police and the state’s Department of Community Affairs to release “voluminous documents” of their investigations into the tragedy.
The lawsuit was preceded by a product liability lawsuit filed in January by the mother, Amanda, and Carol McMullen, who is Hailey Lynn McMullen’s grandmother. Amanda McMullen states in the earlier lawsuit that her children and their grandmother witnessed the tragedy and have suffered extreme emotional distress as a result.
The product liability lawsuit alleges negligence and liability on the part of the manufacturer and operator and seeks compensatory and punitive monetary damages.
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