21-year-old Austin Wuennenberg, a monorail train operator at Walt Disney World, was killed after two monorail trains collided early Sunday morning in the Magic Kingdom section of the park. Five park guests were injured and treated at the scene and the other train operator was uninjured, but taken to the hospital for emotional trauma. Disney reported that this was the first fatal crash in the monorail’s 38-year history in the park.
Wuennenberg died at the scene of the crash at approximately 2 a.m. according to the local fire department’s deputy chief. Disney Vice President of Communications, Michael Griffin, identified the driver as Austin Wuennenberg but refused to comment on how long he had worked for Disney or any circumstances surrounding the crash. Disney officials also refused to comment on how the monorail system operates. Walt Disney World officials have already announced plans that they will reopen the monorail later today.
The Occupational Health and Safety Administration launched an investigation beginning today. The agency will look into whether any workplace safety rules were violated that led to the monorail crash and subsequent death. However, the investigation could take up to six months to complete.
recently named in the 2009 edition of Best Lawyer's In America, David Mittleman has been representing seriously injured people since 1985. A partner with Church Wyble PC—a division of Grewal Law PLLC—Mr. Mittleman and his partners focus on medical malpractice, wrongful death, car accidents, slip and falls, nursing home injury, pharmacy/pharmacist negligence and disability claims.