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July 22, 2001

Train Collision Closes Branson USA Roller Coaster

Branson, MO -- Eight riders on the Windstorm roller coaster at Branson USA received minor injuries when one train collided with the other Saturday morning.

The eight injured passengers were transported to local hospitals where they were treated for minor bruises and scrapes and then released. No one was seriously injured in the incident.

According to witnesses the train failed to stop as it returned to the loading platform and ran into the train directly in front of it. Fortunately, the train it bumped was empty waiting to be loaded with passengers.

The Windstorm roller coaster built by SDC is a compact steel twister. The ride uses fin brakes to slow and stop the coasters two trains. The cause of the accident is unknown, but it appears that one or more of the brakes failed.

Park officials began their investigation Saturday evening. According to Missouri State law the ride must remain closed until the investigation is complete.

The law also requires that all amusement park rides be inspected by the state before the start of the season. Branson USA also conducts daily inspections and test runs of all the park's attractions.