DUPAGE COUNTY, Ill. — A west suburban indoor adventure park faces a lawsuit in DuPage County Circuit Court after a Loves Park mother of two says she almost choked to death on a zip-line ride in 2021.
Marc McCallister, the lawyer representing 23-year-old Evelyn Rapier, pointed to other similar incidents at the park that allegedly placed visitors in danger.
“It does appear there have been prior problems with people being fastened improperly or unsecured in the harness,” McCallister said.
Attorneys pointed to urgent social media posts, such as one from Jackie Malinowski, who warned of “dangerous practices” at the Urban Air Adventure Park in Bloomingdale.
A lawsuit alleges that staffers of the park operated the park’s sky rider zip line in an unsafe manner.
Evelyn Rapier, 23, says the terrifying ordeal lasted 35 seconds.
“My family watched as it happened,” Rapier said.
But Rapier admits that the terrifying ride at the Urban Air Indoor Adventure Park felt like it would never end.
“The harness was placed incorrectly, causing it to go around my neck and as soon as my feet were off the ground, it instantly choked me,” Rapier said.
McCallister filed the lawsuit against the Texas owners of the adventure park, arguing that Rapier feared for her life. Rapier’s father watched as he and others pleaded for help in the April 19, 2021 incident. Rapier struggled to pull the harness off her neck to no avail.
“I started to grab on the rope, pulling myself up,” Rapier said.
Added McCallister: “They failed a properly train their employees to understand what needed to be done.”
Rope burns and bruises on her neck are a testament to what happened, attorneys say, ruining what was supposed to be a joyous birthday for her 3-year-old daughter.
Now they want to make sure this doesn’t happen to anyone else.
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“This is a fun environment where people let their guard down,” McCallister said. “You’re with your kid and these risks are very real and dangerous.”
Management failed to answer WGN News’s request for comment.