A lawsuit filed in Orange County, FL alleges that Walt Disney World Resort fails “to warn [guests] of the inherent dangers presented” on the Humunga Kowabunga waterslide at Disney’s Typhoon Lagoon, a shortcoming that resulted in one guest’s “severe and permanent” injuries. The complaint filed by Emma and Edward McGuinness against Walt Disney Parks and Resorts details a 2019 incident in which Emma McGuinness suffered a “painful wedgie” on the slide; the couple is seeking $50,000 in damages.
Lawsuit Filed for ‘Painful Wedgie’ at Typhoon Lagoon
The nine-page complaint was filed on September 27 and is available to read in its entirety on LawandCrime.com.
McGuinness and her family visited Disney’s Typhoon Lagoon on October 14, 2019, according to the suit. She, along with her daughter and mother, rode Humunga Cowabunga, a waterslide that the document describes as “three, 214-foot, side-by-side enclosed body slides in which riders plummet down a near-vertical [five]-story drop in the dark, reaching speeds approaching 40 miles per hour.”
The complaint states that “at the top of The Slide, riders are instructed to cross their legs at the ankles.” Signs containing an icon of a rider with crossed arms and legs are hung between each slide at the ride’s peak. Visual warnings aside, the suit alleges that “riders are not told why their ankles need to be crossed, the importance of doing so, or the risks of injury if one’s ankles become uncrossed.”
Despite taking the appropriate position, McGuiness states that “her body lifted up [near the end of the slide], she [became] airborne, and she was slammed downward against The Slide — which increased the likelihood of her legs becoming uncrossed or otherwise exposing herself to injury in using The Slide.” McGuiness’ “impact into the standing water at the bottom of The Slide caused [her one-piece bathing suit] to be painfully forced between her legs and for water to be violently forced inside her,” resulting in “immediate and severe pain internally,” immediate bleeding, and “permanent bodily injury including severe vaginal lacerations, a full thickness laceration causing [her] bowel to protrude through her abdominal wall, and damage to her internal organs.”
The suit states at several points that, due to their anatomy, women are at an increased risk of suffering painful and potentially life-altering wedgies on rides such as Humunga Kowabunga. It alleges that Walt Disney World Resort “does not warn women of their increased risk of injury while using The Slide,” also stating that the company has “a duty to warn . . . guests of latent or concealed dangers in using The Slide.”
The complaint argues that “the risk of injury to a rider’s genitalia and internal organs can be eliminated by using shorts or other protective clothing,” something that Walt Disney World does not offer to guests. McGuinness states that she would have worn protective clothing had it been offered, and that she would not have ridden Humunga Kowabunga and she and her party been warned of the potential dangers.
Lawsuits Filed Against Walt Disney Parks and Resorts
The McGuinness lawsuit is one of several guest injury-related suits to be filed against Walt Disney Parks and Resorts in recent months. In early August, a man seeking at least $50,000 in damages filed a lawsuit after he suffered “severe and permanent injuries” after falling while trying to board Haunted Mansion at Magic Kingdom. A lawsuit filed against the company in mid-September alleges that a young child suffered whiplash while riding Peter Pan’s Flight in May.
In July, a woman sued Disney after alleging that she was “badly injured” after the monorail doors at Walt Disney World shut on her. Disney denies the incident ever occurred.