Plan for Kansas water park is unclear after child death

Schlitterbahn hasn't said whether it will reopen
Plan for Kansas water park is unclear after child death

A Kansas water park where a 10-year-old boy was decapitated hasn’t announced whether it will reopen, but it isn’t hiring lifeguards, advertising or selling tickets with less than a month left before its typical Memorial Day weekend opening date.

Schlitterbahn remains mum on its plans, but has largely removed reference from its website about the Kansas City, Kansas, park where Caleb Schwab was killed in 2016 when the raft he was riding on the 17-story Verruckt slide went airborne and hit a metal pole.

“Schlitterbahn has not informed us of their plans, but we are assuming they are not opening this summer,” said Unified Government of Wyandotte County and Kansas City, Kansas, spokesman Mike Taylor. “We are hopeful that Schlitterbahn will come under new ownership and branding, and will open next summer.”

Schlitterbahn spokeswoman Winter Prosapio declined to comment on the Kansas park’s future, including whether it would open.

Prosecutors filed criminal charges against Schlitterbahn co-owner Jeff Henry, the designer of Verruckt, the park’s operations manager and two maintenance workers, alleging that shoddy planning and maintenance led to Caleb’s death. But the maintenance workers were acquitted in October, and a judge dismissed charges against the other three in January citing improper evidence.