Virginia Woman 'Lucky to Be Alive' After Raft Flips in Water Park Accident

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tornado water ride
(Photo: Twitter / @walker72john)

A Virginia woman’s Fourth of July day of fun at an amusement park ended in a trip to the hospital with severe injuries.

PEOPLE reports that Christina and Steve Orebaugh decided to spend the holiday at Kings Dominion amusement park in Doswell, Virginia. After riding roller coasters with family, they decided to try the Tornado water ride.

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However, the couple were nervous about the ride before they even got on.

“We got to the top and I asked the person working there, ‘Does this thing flip’” Steve Orebaugh said. “She said, ‘No that’s never happened before. We test them all the time.’”

Even with the ride operator’s reassurance, Orebaugh said that he had decided that he wouldn’t ride a second time when he saw his wife suddenly go head-first into one of the ride’s walls.

“I knew she was hurt,” he said. “I was just screaming, ‘Christina, Christina.’ She was floating down the water, out of the shoot and into the pool.”

Orebaugh was also thrown from the raft when it flipped over. By the time he was able to get to her, he says she was “underwater and unconscious.” Orebaugh said that lifeguards and EMTs didn’t show up to help until he reached the edge of the pool.

“Why wasn’t someone there to catch her before she went underwater? When they see a raft coming out with no one in it they should know something happened. If I had also been injured I don’t know what would have happened.”

In a statement, Kings Dominion states that staff responded immediately.

“Lifeguards who were at their posted positions in the water at the ride, as well as park medical staff, immediately responded,” the statement reads.

Christina Orebaugh suffered a broken collarbone, bruises and a severe concussion and will be unable to work for months, but her husband says she is lucky to be alive.

“She’s very lucky to be alive … You hear about it happening all over the country, but who would ever think that it would happen to you? We went there to have some fun.”


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