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October 5, 2000

Disneyland Settles Suit Over Christmas Eve Accident

Anaheim, CA -- Disneyland has settled a suit over the 1998 Christmas Eve accident on the dock of the Columbia Sailing Ship that killed one and severely injured two others. Officials would not disclose the amount, but experts estimate the settlement to be at least $20 million.

The money will go to the family of the Washington State tourist who was killed in the accident. Luan Phi Dawson, 33 was died after a metal cleat came loose from the Columbia ship while it docked, hitting him in the head. His wife Lieu Thuy Vuong, 45 was also severely injured in the accident, as was Disneyland employee Christine Carpenter.

After an investigation Disneyland was fined $12,500 by the state Division of Occupational Safety and Health for failing to properly train the employees operating the attraction. State inspectors also found problems with the bolts that were securing the cleat. Following the accident Disneyland made changes to the operating procedures on the Columbia and many of its attractions.