Daytona Beach roller coaster derailment remains under investigation

Questions surround inspection before derailment

By Jerry Askin - Reporter

DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. - Questions remain unanswered after a roller coaster derailed on the Daytona Beach Pier last week, ejecting and hurting several people.

On Wednesday, Florida Agricultural commissioner Adam Putnam didn't give a straight answer on whether the inspectors who gave all the clear last week for the Sand Blaster roller coaster are still on the job and inspecting other rides.

"This is something that we take very seriously," Putnam said. 

[READ: 5 things we know about the Daytona Beach roller coaster derailment]

While Putnam said his agency doesn't know if the inspection missed anything that could have led to the incident, after News 6 asked more questions, his media relations team emailed saying those inspectors are not being investigated, but wouldn't say if they're out inspecting other rides. 

"The individuals who are doing the investigation are not the individuals who gave it the all clear," Putnam said.

He added that the investigation remains ongoing and they are working to find out exactly what caused the coaster to derail. 

"It’s premature to say exactly what the cause could’ve been," Putnam said. 

[READ: Questions remain after roller coaster derails hours after passing inspection]

News 6 learned the Sand Blaster ride has failed several inspections. The ride was shut down for an entire month prior to last week to allow workers to address issues such as excessive corrosion and nonworking latches. 

Melissa Collins said she was on the ride and is now recovering after last week’s scare. 

"I just remember trying to pray within my mind that God would spare me and let me see my kids and husband," Collins said. 

Lawyers at Morgan and Morgan say a lawsuit may be on the way. They’ve hired their own roller coaster safety expert to investigate.

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