Designer of Schlitterbahn water slide arrested in DFW Airport

Designer of Schlitterbahn water slide arrested in DFW Airport

Designer of Schlitterbahn water slide arrested in DFW Airport

Federal authorities in Dallas have arrested one of the designers of a Kansas water park slide that decapitated a 10-year-old boy.

John Schooley, 72, was arrested by the U.S. Marshals North Texas Fugitive Task Force Monday night as he arrived at the airport on flight from China.

In this photo taken with a fisheye lens, riders go down the world's tallest water slide called "Verruckt" at Schlitterbahn Waterpark, Wednesday, July 9, 2014, in Kansas City, Kan. The raft Caleb was riding went airborne, hitting a pole and netting created to keep riders from being thrown from the ride.

A grand jury has issued indictments against the park, the construction company that built the slide, former park operations director Tyler Austin Miles, and a co-owner of Schlitterbahn Waterparks and Resorts, Jeffrey Wayne Henry.

He was charged with second-degree murder, multiple counts of aggravated endangering a child and aggravated battery in connection to the death of Caleb Schwab, online jail records show.

In an indictment filed last month, prosecutors said Schooley had no engineering credential relevant to amusement-ride design or safety.

Authorities in Texas say the co-owner of a water park who has been charged in the decapitation death of a 10-year-old boy has been extradited to Kansas.

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Nevertheless, Schooley was responsible for doing "the math" that went into the slide's design. In one of those cases, a 15-year-old girl went temporarily blind. The two women who rode on the same raft with Caleb suffered serious injuries and settled claims with Schlitterbahn for an undisclosed amount.

The indictment states that neither Schooley nor Henry had the technical expertise to build the ride which was meant to impress the makers of a Travel Channel documentary, NBC reported.

The Schwab family reached settlements of almost $20 million with Schlitterbahn and various companies associated with the design and construction of the waterslide. Their design "violated almost all aspects of the longstanding industry safety standards published by ASTM".

The company also operates water parks in Galveston, Corpus Christi, South Padre Island and New Braunfels, Texas, according to its website.

"The allegation that we operated, and failed to maintain, a ride that could foreseeably cause such a tragic accident is beyond the pale of speculation", the water park said in a statement last week.

The indictment also said Schooley admitted, "If we actually knew how to do this, and it could be done that easily, it wouldn't be that spectacular".

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