Adventureland’s Raging River to remain closed for 2022, Park unveils new safety upgrades

Visitors arrive at the Adventureland Park amusement park, Tuesday, July 6, 2021, in Altoona,...
Visitors arrive at the Adventureland Park amusement park, Tuesday, July 6, 2021, in Altoona, Iowa.(AP Photo/Charlie Neibergall)
Published: Apr. 18, 2022 at 2:21 PM CDT
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ALTOONA, Iowa (WOWT) - A water ride at Adventureland Park will not reopen for the 2022 season after it closed last year following a fatal accident.

The Raging River closed in July, 2021 after 11-year-old Michael Jaramillo was killed while riding the popular attraction with his family. A boat carrying six members of the family flipped over. Michael was killed and his brother David was critically injured during the incident.

Adventureland has gone through a change of ownership since the accident. The resort was acquired by Palace Entertainment in December 2021.

Palace Entertainment announced Monday the Raging River would remain closed.

“The Raging River will remain closed this year. We are in the midst of a comprehensive review of the attraction, working with the ride manufacturer as well as other third-party experts to fully understand the attraction and safety upgrades it may need to comply with state, industry and Palace Entertainment standards. That process is expected to continue for some time, and thus we know the attraction won’t open in 2022. The ride’s ultimate future will be determined by the results of this review.”

Palace Entertainment has also upgraded the park with nine new rides and safety upgrades.

According to Palace Entertainment and Adventureland’s new general manager Bill Lentz, all rides and attractions have undergone safety reviews that they claim exceed Iowa and American Society for Testing and Materials safety standards.

“We’ve gone through each ride, top to bottom, and met proactively with state inspectors to ensure Adventureland operates rides and attractions at the highest standard of safety,” said Lentz. “From ordering the smallest part directly from the manufacturer to running emergency planning exercises throughout the park with first responders, our first and foremost priority for guests and staff is safety.”

The park will also put an operations manager, as well as a health, safety, and environment manager on-site to help respond to incidents. Palace Entertainment’s “Manager on Duty” program has also been instituted at the park. The program provides training and a response protocol for emergency situations.

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