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Morgan v. Six Flags Great Adventure, L.L.C.

Superior Court of New Jersey, Appellate Division

May 28, 2013

LISHA LOO MORGAN and RAYMOND MORGAN, Plaintiffs-Appellants,
v.
SIX FLAGS GREAT ADVENTURE, L.L.C., t/a SIX FLAGS HURRICANE HARBOR, Defendant-Respondent.

NOT FOR PUBLICATION WITHOUT THE APPROVAL OF THE APPELLATE DIVISION

Argued September 20, 2012

On appeal from the Superior Court of New Jersey, Law Division, Ocean County, Docket No. L-1571-10.

Richard B. Ansell argued the cause for appellants (Ansell, Grimm & Aaron, P.C., attorneys; Mr. Ansell, of counsel and on the brief; Kristine M. Bergman, on the brief).

Douglas D. Suplee argued the cause for respondent (Marshall, Dennehey, Warner, Coleman & Goggin, attorneys; Mr. Suplee, on the brief).

Before Judges Axelrad and Nugent.

PER CURIAM

Plaintiffs, Lisha Loo Morgan and Raymond Morgan, appeal from the Law Division order that granted summary judgment to defendant, Six Flags Great Adventure, L.L.C., and dismissed their personal injury and product liability complaint with prejudice.[1] We affirm.

Construed in the light most favorable to plaintiff, Brill v. Guardian Life Ins. Co. of Am., 142 N.J. 520, 540 (1995), the evidence on the motion record established the following facts. On August 16, 2009, plaintiff and other members of her family visited defendant's amusement park in Jackson Township. While riding a water slide called "The Big Bamboo" with her daughter and granddaughter, plaintiff fractured her fifth left metatarsal.[2]

Plaintiff described the "The Big Bamboo" as a large yellow raft, with handles on each side, that goes down a slide. She and her daughter and granddaughter climbed stairs to the top of the slide and then sat in the raft in a circle. An attendant instructed them to sit in the raft with their legs crossed under them, "like Indian style, " and to hold onto the handles on "both sides, left and right."

Once the three were positioned in the raft according to the attendant's instructions, the attendant pushed the raft "to go through the tunnel, the slide." Plaintiff described how she was injured:

And we're swooshing back and forth, we're coming down and we come down and the raft went airborne and when it came down at the end of the tunnel that's when my foot - -at the edge, that's when the raft came down, at the edge and that's how I fractured my foot[.]

Plaintiff further explained that after the raft became airborne, part of it came down on the edge of the slide, rather than entirely in the splash pool. Her left foot was "sandwiched" between the slide and her body weight.

Plaintiff filed a complaint alleging that defendant designed, manufactured, operated, and maintained The Big Bamboo in a negligent and careless manner, and failed to warn plaintiff of the risks associated with using the ride (first count); and designed, manufactured, assembled, sold, and installed the ride in violation of New Jersey's Product Liability Act (PLA), ...


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