Sure, water slides might seem like fun. What could go wrong? There’s no machinery involved, no heavy moving parts or risk of electrocution, so it’s perfectly safe, right? Wrong. Water slides have the potential to be incredibly dangerous, causing injury, psychological damage, and even death. If you don’t believe it, you need only to look at the long list of people who have suffered horrible fates at the hands of innocent-looking water slides. Some get stuck inside them, waiting fearfully in the dark. Some fall off the sides. Some even get decapitated. And some only experience the dangerous part after reaching the bottom of the slide. After hearing about all of these nasty stories, you might want to steer clear of water slides in the future. On the other hand, if you’re the kind of person who actually enjoys close brushes with death, you might be more excited than ever to ride these slides!
You might think that water slides are a safer alternative to roller coasters. You would be wrong again. Water slides are the most likely rides to injure people at amusement parks. Go-Karts are the second most likely source of injury, although they’re still make up less than 50% of water slide injuries. So why are people so prone to injury on water slides? A big factor is restraints. On a roller coaster, you are tightly strapped in. With water slides, there is nothing to hold you in place. That’s why severe accidents are much more likely to happen on water slides.
15 Steamer Slide
Calypso Water Park in Ottawa, Canada was slammed with 20 charges in 2015 due to safety issues. Nine were withdrawn during the trial, leaving 11. The Calypso Water Park was found guilty of six of these charges. These charges mainly concerned a particularly dangerous slide called the “Steamer Slide.” Riders on The Steamer plummet down the slide on tubes, and those tubes flipped fairly frequently, leaving several people injured. One person broke her vertebrae in two places on the ride. Another broke their collar bone. When these injuries happened, the water park failed to report the incidents or shut down the slide. That’s why they were charged. Now, you have to have serious balls of steel to slide down The Steamer. Maybe that just adds to the fun…
14 Geronimo Falls
Geronimo Falls is a slide in the infamous Action Park, a water park in New Jersey where several people were injured, died, or sued the park because of its lack of safety precautions. Sounds like fun! Geronimo Falls no longer exists, but when it did, it was considered one of the most extreme slides of all time. This was due to it’s incredibly stupid amount of steepness. The incline was insane. Today’s slides don’t even try to match this level of steepness. There’s a few reasons for that, but the most important reason they don’t make slides this steep anymore is because when you build a slide like Geronimo Falls, people sliding down it actually start flying into the air instead of sticking to slide’s surface. They countered this problem by installing a metal grate over the slide’s opening. That meant tons of people slammed into the metal grate and then were bounced back down into slide, causing severe injuries. People going down this slide experienced speeds upwards of 60 miles per hour.
13 Aqua Nova
Sometimes the most dangerous thing about a water slide is not the water slide itself, but what happens to you once you come shooting out the end and into the pool below. That’s what over 21 people found out at the Aqua Nova Adventure Pool the hard way. Located in Sweden, this pool has several water slides and is very popular among the locals. Unfortunately, it’s one of the many pools in Sweden and across Europe where refugees and Middle-Eastern migrants have sexually abused young women in the pool. In 2014, one young girl was abused, and in 2015 the number rose to 20 young women. Every single one of the suspects involved was not born in Sweden. These girls were groped in the pools, had their bikinis torn off, and were sexually assaulted in the restrooms. In Middle-Eastern culture, the woman is considered to be at fault if she arouses men. Therefore, assault is excusable and accepted if a man is aroused by a woman. Girls in bikinis are seen by refugees and middle-eastern migrants as “easy,” and “asking for it.”
12 Aqua Loop
Wet ‘N Wild Water Park in Australia is home to one of the most dangerous water slides in the world. It’s a complete loop the loop system, where riders do a full rotation, sliding upside down, before plummeting back down to the ground again. It’s called the “Aqua Loop.” Back in 2012, a woman sued the water park after a serious accident on the side. Somehow, she didn’t get enough speed to go all the way around the loop, and slid back down the loop to the bottom after she failed to clear the loop. So she was there, stuck in the bottom of the water slide, in the dark, and scared. She was rightfully freaking out because she was worried about another rider coming down the slide at high speed and smashing into her. Somehow, she managed to find an escape hatch and pull herself out of the ride. But she dislocated her shoulder in the process.
The AquaSphere is part of the Peninsula Aquatic Recreation Center. This slide, which features long, winding paths, has been plagued with all kinds of problems since its conception. These problems usually result in people suffering some pretty intense injuries. One boy was seen thrown out of the slide at the bottom completely limp after falling off the raft and being bounced around inside the slide. The impacts left him unconscious. After this incident, the slide was closed for investigations into what caused the problem. But this is hardly the first time the slide has been shut down after an injury. In its past, the slide has severely injured two young boys in once incidents, had its pipe burst, and injured two adults who hit their heads on the ceiling of the slide. Even when the ride was first tested by the staff and their families for a private event after first being built, it still managed to injure several people.
10 Shoot The Rapids
Shoot The Rapids is a water slide in Cedar Point. Riders get to go down a massive slide while on a raft, with up to ten people fitting on one raft. The ride was the site of one of the worst injuries and incidents in water slide history. One of the rafts was being pulled to the top of the hill when the ride malfunctioned. The raft was sent hurtling back down the hill before flipping upside down. So ten people were stuck in there seats, trapped in the water with no way out. One woman had suffered severe head injuries. There were children on the raft, who were scared out of their minds. People rushed into the water and attempted to manually flip the raft back over by hand. If it weren’t for these people, the people on the raft probably would have drowned.
9 Arriba Water Park
The Arriba Water Park in the small village of Norderstadt has recently taken drastic measures to protect the people who go there. But once again, it’s what happens to people when they come out of the bottom of the water slides that’s the problem. On March 4th, 2015, two girls were sexually assaulted by Afghan asylum seekers in the pool. The girls, aged 18 and 14, were ambushed by two Afghans who were waiting at the bottom of the slide for the girls to come out. One of these males was 14, the other was 34. Security teams detained the individuals after separating them from the girls and the police were called. The males are now facing jail time after being arrested. Now the park has been forced to segregate the males from the females, and place security teams in the water disguised as normal swimmers.
8 Black Hole
One of the most infamous water slides in the world is “The Black Hole” slide at the Wet N’ Wild Water Park in Orlando. It has been the target of several lawsuits, all filed by people who have been seriously injured while riding this death trap. In 2000, a man was awarded 1.73 million dollars after filing a lawsuit pertaining to severe injuries he suffered on The Black Hole. He was struck by an unknown object while travelling down the slide. When he was ejected out from the bottom of the slide, he couldn’t move his legs. He later needed metal plates implanted into his neck. There have been countless other lawsuits against Wet ‘N Wild after injuries sustained in The Black Hole. One girl suffered injuries after falling off her tube, hitting the bottom. One person came to a complete stop and was hit hard by the next person coming down the slide. Another girl’s tube flipped, injuring her. The main problem is that the ride takes 23 seconds for a person to complete, but the staff send a tube down every 20 seconds, meaning they don’t wait until the first person has left the slide before pushing another person down.
7 Insano Water Slide
For our next water slide, we go to Brazil’s Beach Park. It’s home to one of the tallest water slides in the world. We are of course talking about the Insano Water Slide. This thing is a whopping 41 meters in height. That’s the same as a 14 -story building! Riders experience speeds of over 65 miles per hour on their riveting way down to the bottom. They say it is so steep that your body barely touches the actual slide; you’re in mid air for most of the ride. Because of this, it’s incredibly important to cross your ankles and cross your arms around your chest if you want to ride this thing. For all the hype, the slide is over in about 4 or 5 seconds. Staff often laugh at people who come out of the bottom of this ride. These tourists are often reduced to tears by the time they get spat out of the bottom of this behemoth. Can you blame them?
6 VertiGo Slide
The city of Benidorm in Spain is home to a slide that has caused mass carnage in its past. It’s so dangerous that at one point the pool below it was red with blood. This dangerous ride is known as the “VertiGo” slide, and one British tourist suffered incredibly severe injuries while riding it. It’s a 33 meter high slide, and riders can experience speeds of over 60 miles per hour. You stand in a capsule at the top, and then a trap door opens beneath you, instantly shooting you down into the slide. When a British man stepped into the capsule, however, the trap door only opened part way. He was forced through a small crack, leaving his face torn apart, and his legs scraped with long gashes. The staff merely took him to the side and told him they would stitch his face up. By that time, the pool at the bottom was filling up with his blood. Amazingly, the staff opened the ride again after just ten minutes!
5 Sahara Sidewinders
The Sahara Sidewinders Ride at the Kalahari Resort in Wisconsin Dells has a track record of being very dangerous indeed. It’s marketed as the only indoor slide with loops, the first of its kind in America. But with this new technology comes new safety concerns, concerns that were ignored by the resort in question. In 2011, the resort was hit with a lawsuit after a teenage boy was injured while riding the Kalahari Resort. The reason the lawsuit was successful was because it was proved that the Kalahari knew the ride was unsafe, but did nothing to fix it. They know this because several other people complained about the ride. These complaints were ignored. Wisconsin Dells has a huge track record of injuries at its various resorts, but this one was the worst. The nature of the slide makes smacking against the surface incredibly common.
4 Cannonball Falls
For the next of our dangerous water slides, we return once again to the infamous Action Park. Having a water park with the most injuries in the state is one thing. But what about the single water slide that has the most injuries in the entire state? That honor goes to Cannonball Falls, the most dangerous ride in the most dangerous park in New Jersey. Because of the sheer amount of people who were getting injured on this thing, the park had to shut it down in September 2015. The slide ends with a ten foot sheer drop into a pool. Six people were severely injured in only one season. Five of these people all suffered the same injury- an injury to the shoulder. The company that operates the park was extremely reluctant to pay for medical treatment for any of Cannonball Fall’s victims.
3 The Verruckt
One of the most recent and horrific tragedies to have occurred on a water slide involved a water slide called “Verruckt.” This water slide is located in the Kansas City Water Park, and it’s the tallest, largest water slide in the world. It’s 17 stories high. That’s over 51 meters. Caleb Schwab, a 10-year-old boy, was thrown from the raft and decapitated in August 2016. Details are still coming out about the nature of his death, as a full investigation is being conducted. Witnesses report hearing a large bang and then screaming. Then blood started to come out of the bottom of the ride. Caleb Schwab was very skinny, and many people are saying he shouldn’t have been allowed on the slide. You must be 137 cm to be allowed to ride The Verruckt. “Verruckt” is a German word that translated roughly as “crazy.” Since the incident, the slide has been closed, and it may end up being shut down for good.
2 Speed Slide
One of the most dangerous water slides of all time was undoubtedly the “Speed Slide.” This slide was located in the famed Knoebels Water Park in Pennsylvania. In 1999, it was getting a lot of attention from the local news because of the amount of injuries that were occurring on this ride. The ride featured a long flat stretch at the end that caused considerable damage to various riders. But those most affected by this slide were girls. That’s because the ride damaged a certain part of the anatomy. The lawyer who was representing two girls whose vaginas were injured on this ride said that, “It's the little girls that are the most seriously injured. When they come down, the speed they're moving with and the force of the water there just rips them apart. The force of that water is just forced into these children's vaginas.” The two girls she was representing, aged 11 and 12, both suffered serious injuries to their vaginas. One girl suffered a two inch cut inside her vagina while the other had her cervix torn.
1 Cannonball Loop
One of the most ridiculous and obviously unsafe water slides ever to be built was made in, you guessed it, Action Park. This slide epitomized what Action Park was all about: A slide built without any thought towards safety or potential risks, a slide meant to hurt people first, and give them a fun experience second. Just by looking at this slide, you can see that whoever designed it was probably high, and anyone who wanted to ride it was either suicidal or had lost a bet. It was deemed too dangerous even for Action Park, a water park famous for building rides that are unsafe and often fatal. Now that’s saying something. It was open for only one month before being closed. No one ever died, but then again not many people actually had the balls or stupidity to ride it.