Park is sued by man who broke his ankle

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A man who broke his ankle after he was thrown into the air while on a water chute at Wicksteed Park has launched a law suit against the firm.

Mark Simpson, 51, is suing the attraction for up to £250,000 after he says he was flung out of the 86-year-old ride when attempting to climb out of the boat when it got stuck on the ramp.

He landed back in the seating, but suffered a broken left ankle, injured knee, shoulder and wrist, and whiplash.

He also later developed a clot on his lungs which, he claims, impacted his chance of getting a job.

Now, Mr Simpson is claiming for damages of up to £250,000 from the amusement park in Kettering following the incident on May 29 last year.

His solicitors Spearing Waite issued the writ to the High Court after they and the attraction could not agree on a suitable pay-out.

The insurers for Wicksteed Park have admitted liability for the accident.

According to the writ Mr Simpson had been at the park with 16 members of his family when they decided to go on the water chute, a boat which speeds down a ramp into a lake and then floats until a rope halts its progress.

But as the boat was being winched back towards the ramp, the boat became caught on a steel walkway.

Park staff urged him to climb out of the boat but as he went to do so, the boat moved violently towards the ramp, flinging him into the air, the writ says.

Mr Simpson, of Leicester, claims the company was negligent and says it failed to slacken the tension on the rope, to inspect the winch mechanism and heed the prevailing danger.

The company also negligently failed to warn him of the dangers of getting off in the circumstances, required him to get off when it was unsafe, and exposed him to a hazard, it is alleged.

Wicksteed Park Managing Director John Roberts said: “As this is an ongoing legal matter, we are unable to comment at this stage.”