After riding the Raptor roller coaster at Cedar Point in Sandusky, Ohio, a 45-year-old man by the name of James A. Young II was struck and killed after entering a restricted area on Thursday. According to local authorities, Young "jumped over a fence into a restricted area under the Raptor and was looking for his personal belongings" when he was struck by either the roller coaster itself or another passenger's body. "Park safety officials responded immediately to the situation," says a Cedar Point representative. "Unfortunately, the guest has passed away."
Cedar Point, an Ohio mainstay since 1870, is known for its versatile selection of 17 different roller coasters. The Raptor, which struck and killed Young, generally reaches a maximum speed of 57 miles per hour and is a park favorite. The park spreads across 365 acres on a peninsula in Lake Erie, with the self-described status as the "roller coaster capital of the world."
Statistics on roller coaster related injuries and deaths have taken a turn for the worse in recent years, with the death toll between 1990 and 2004 reported as 52. That figure comes from the Consumer Product Safety Commission, who no longer tracks such deaths. In 2014, statistics gathered from other sources showed that the risk of injury or death on a rollercoaster was actually greater than the risk of death by shark attack.