26 October 2016

Children's survival almost miraculous: Qld deputy police chief

| Charlotte
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Queensland Police Assistant Commissioner Brian Codd.

Queensland Police Assistant Commissioner Brian Codd says the fact that two children survived the tragic Dreamworld accident is “almost a miracle”.

Lifeline has set up a dedicated number for those affected by the Dreamworld tragedy. Please call 1800 543 354.

Two children, aged 10 and 12, escaped after the raft on which they were travelling overturned, while four adults including three Canberrans were killed. Assistant Commissioner Codd says the children were thrown from the ride and then managed to extricate themselves.

“It seems from what I’ve seen almost a miracle that anyone could survive that. If we’re going to be thankful for anything, I’m thankful for that,” he said.

Assistant Commissioner Codd said the accident occurred just before the passengers were due to exit the ride.

“The devices that people sit on have come to the conclusion of the ride at the area where people get off,” he said.

“Something has occurred, where two of those have come together, and as a result, one has flipped backwards and it has caught and tossed some of the people that were on the ride backwards on the conveyer belt.”

“That’s off my viewing of the CCTV. The full analysis of how that occurred and how inconsistent that is with normal operating procedures will be very much at the forefront of our investigation.”

Assistant Commissioner Codd said the coronial investigation would examine everything related to the accident, from policies, procedures and maintenance schedules to whether the structures of the ride comply with contemporary engineering standards.

“If and where there are criminal aspects including negligence that warrant being pursued, we’ll do that,” he said.

Note: Assistant Commissioner Codd said in a press conference this morning that two girls, aged 10 and 13, were thrown into the water, but police have now clarified that should have been a boy, aged 10, and a girl, aged 12.

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Once again we hear that unions have been complaining about and alerting the company to safety issues for some 18 months and, once again, we hear that those complaints have been ignored.

This dreadful tragedy is one of the inevitable consequences of the union bashing that successive governments have engaged in with their mantra “company good, union bad”.

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