Grad Bash Will Never Be The Same


Marlon Mazariegos, Contributor

The tragic death of the 14 year old boy on a roller coaster has many students reconsidering their plans to grad bash.

A young boy who was visiting Orlando’s ICON park has passed away after going on a freefall ride and falling to his death. This ride is known as the world’s tallest freestanding drop tower standing at 430 feet. He slipped through the coaster’s restraints after the descent started. Right before the ride started the workers were checking to make sure everyone was secure and in a video you can hear one of the riders asking why there isn’t a seatbelt.

The news came only weeks before South Broward High School will be attending grad bash (field trip to universal studios). 

 South Broward High School senior Anthony Maria was unsure if he should attend the grad bash. Mr.Maria was convinced by his friends and mom to go so that he could have fun.

 “I have always been scared of roller coasters. I usually am able to get in the line for a roller coaster but once I can see everyone getting on the ride I feel an extreme urge of panic. I am rarely able to stay and get on the ride. Most of the time just get out of line and leave.” said Maria.

Even though he was going to be going to Universal Studios, he was unsure if he would want to go on the rides. His friends caught wind of this and pleaded with him  to go on the roller coasters with all of them which ultimately got Maria to consider the option.

While scrolling through twitter a news article popped up of the tragic roller coaster accident and this brought the same sense of panic that overtakes Maria while in line for a roller coaster. This accident made him go from a maybe to a no about going on the rides. 

“After this event I am now back to being as scared if not more scared and don’t plan on going on rides. The only exceptions are the water rides along with the 3D rides,” said Maria. I still have 2 weeks to think about going on the rides but I will for sure not be going on Dr.Doom as that is almost the same rides that the accident happened in.” 

17 year old, South Broward, senior Brian Sutton loves to go on roller coasters. Since he was little he has always waited for the time when he would be tall enough to go on all the rides. When that time came he definitely took advantage of it.

“As soon as I was able to go on roller coasters I didn’t look back. When I go to an amusement park I try to go on every single ride no matter what. The adrenaline while you slowly go up waiting for a big drop is my favorite part.” said Sutton.

Sutton couldn’t have waited for grad bash to come any sooner. As soon as it was announced he talked to his friends about it. He was in shock when all but one of his friends were unsure if they were going to go because of the price. The very next day after the announcement Brian Sutton paid for his field trip. After paying he convinced five out of 6 of his friends that it would be worth it. Then while him and his friends were planning their path for the trip the unexpected happen.

“I was just scrolling through tiktok when I saw a news video popped up talking about a death on a roller coaster. It was a coincidence that I saw this video the day we were planning out our trip. Normally I don’t think a story like this would have had such an effect on me but it being in Orlando the same place grad bash is being help really spooked me.” said Sutton.

He still plans on going on all the rides except one. Dr.Doom the only ride Sutton has yet to go on. Last time he got the chance to no one would go with him which made him back out of the ride. This time he was excited for it because his friends would go on it but he was now the one refusing to go on the ride. 

“I never thought I would be the one to back down from a roller coaster but as of now I don’t have plans to make a stop at Dr.Doom. I don’t think this news effected many students other then people refusing to go on Dr.Doom. My opinion on going on the ride might change if I walk past and see that there is no line.” said Mr.Sutton

South Broward Senior Mark Gonzalez has been waiting for grad bash ever since freshman year. 

“My sister went to grad bash her senior year when I was a freshman and ever since then I couldn’t wait to go on it. She made it sound like a dream and a experience that everyone should have,” said Gonzalez.

He was watching the news with his mother when he first heard about the tragedy. Dr.Doom was his sister’s favorite ride and the one ride that she said he needs to go on no matter what. 

“I feel very conflicted because I’ve been wanting to go on this ride for 4 years but reality just slapped me in the face. I don’t know if I will be able to go on that ride because of how unsafe I will feel.” said Gonzalez.

Many students aren’t affected by the accident that happened in Orlando other than one ride Dr.Doom which is the same as the ride in Orlando just not as tall.

They will be having just as much fun and not changing their plans besides skipping this ride that is very much alike to where it all started.