The “world’s tallest waterslide” in a Kansas City, Kan. waterpark will be torn down once authorities complete their investigation into the death of a 10-year-old boy who was killed on the ride in August.
Owners of the Schlitterbahn waterpark in Kansas City say they plan to demolish the 168-foot-tall waterslide, named “Verruckt” (German for “crazy”) “once the investigation is concluded and we are given permission by the court.”
The waterpark, owned by Schlitterbahn Waterparks and Resorts of New Braunfels, Texas is one of several waterparks the company operates, but the only one outside of Texas.
The Kansas City waterpark drew national attention after Caleb Schwab, the son of Kansas state representative Scott Schwab, was decapitated on the ride Aug. 7. Investigators believe the raft Caleb shared with two older women went airborne on a hill after the 17-story plunge and that his neck was caught by a metal hoop holding safety netting in place over the slide.
“All of us at Schlitterbahn have been heartbroken over the tragedy that occurred on Verruckt. In our 50 years of providing an environment for families and friends to gather, we’ve never experienced this kind of devastating event,” the park said in a statement.
“Once the investigation is concluded and we are given permission by the court, Verruckt will be decommissioned — closed permanently and the slide removed from the tower. In our opinion, it is the only proper course of action following this tragedy.”
Lawyers for the Schwab family and the two women riding with Caleb continue to investigate the incident but no lawsuits have been filed. Both women were injured physically, but the emotional wounds of being with Caleb when the accident occurred may be the injuries most difficult to heal.