Family sues Hurricane Harbor in woman’s 2011 drowning

Posted Saturday, Sep. 07, 2013  comments  Print Reprints
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The family of a woman who drowned in the Lazy River pool at Hurricane Harbor in 2011 is suing the park for negligence and for the emotional trauma of witnessing the accident.

The wrongful death suit was filed Thursday in 67th State District Court in Fort Worth.

The children of Linda Forbes, who drowned Sept. 5, 2011, say park employees did not use mouth-to-mouth resuscitation and other life-saving measures to save their mother and that employees were “chaotic and disorganized.”

The children named as plaintiffs are Melinda Forbes, Michelle Trail, Jeffrey Forbes and Nelson Scott Forbes.

Six Flags Hurricane Harbor officials declined to comment on Friday, saying it is against company policy.

Joe Luce, an attorney representing the family, could not be reached to comment Friday afternoon.

According to the Tarrant County medical examiner, Linda Forbes lived in Allen and was 64 at the time of her death. The cause of death was listed as “drowning fresh water.”

According to the suit, Melinda Forbes and Michelle Trail had riden the Sea Wolf and returned to their table when they heard a lifeguard blowing a whistle. Trail realized that Hurricane Harbor employees were pulling their mother from the water. The sisters then pulled their children back so that they would not see their grandmother.

The suit describes a chaotic scene as employees started chest compressions and placed a mask with a bag over Linda Forbes’ mouth. An off-duty paramedic and park guest told the employees to roll the woman over.

An employee eventually brought a defibrilator, but the machine did not work.

The suit asserts that employees were “chaotic, visibly shaken and not working together in a unified manner.”

When paramedics and firefighters arrived, the exit gates near the Lazy River were “locked and inaccessible.”

“The negligence of the defendant … caused the premature and tragic death of Linda Forbes,” the lawsuit stated.

The suit states that park employees were not trained in lifesaving procedures, the park should have had working equipment in place, and there should have been easy access for firefighters and paramedics.

The Forbes children are seeking damages for pain and suffering, emotional distress, the loss of companionship funeral and medical expenses. An amount was not specified in the suit.

Elizabeth Campbell, 817-390-7696 Twitter: @fwstliz

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