Tsumagoi, Japan - According to reports from several Japanese news sources, including The Mainichi and Japan Times, a young boy was injured last week when he fell from a small roller coaster at Karuizawa Omocha Okoku (roughly translated Karuizawa Toy Kingdom) amusement park in Tsumagoi, Japan. Last Sunday, June 17, at around 11 a.m. the boy, Nao Kunifuda, fell about 1.5 meters (5 ft) from the parks small, powered Dragon Coaster. When he fell, he reportedly landed on the concrete pad below the coaster, breaking his arm in the process. He was airlifted to a local hospital for safety purposes.
The Mainichi reports that police suspect the young boy's seatbelt may have come loose or undone while the train was traversing the course. Park officials told them that a worker had checked everyone’s seatbelts before allowing the train to depart, meaning it’s also possible the boy may have wiggled his way out of the seatbelt, or even unbuckled it. The exact cause is unknown at this time, and police are investigating the incident to see if there were any issues with the seatbelt or the park's implementation of safety checks. So far they have only confirmed that the boy met the rides 100 cm height requirement.
Dragon Coaster is a very small, family-friendly, powered coaster from Zamperla, featuring a top speed of about 8 mph and a single helix element along a 207 foot track, which it rounds three times. The ride is specifically designed for youngsters, and holds up to 20 passengers. The Mainichi reports that Nao was sitting alone in the front row of the back car, his 9-year-old sister was behind him in the last row of the same car. No indication has been given as to whether any adult may have been riding with Nao, which could have potentially prevented the incident from occurring.
No further details of the incident have been discovered as the park and police are investigating the exact cause of the accident.