Roller Coaster Accident at Summit Beach (Part 4)

Roller Coaster accident - 1918-07-08, headlineRoller Coaster accident - 1918-07-08, part 4Story of the Crash

Mrs. Kurth was conscious all the way to the People’s Hospital and gave her details of what had transpired to her husband, who accompanied her in the ambulance. She said:

We saw that something terrible was going up the incline the car began to wobble and that the cars ahead of us were wobbling even more. Then from the first car came shouts calling for the machinery to be stopped. We saw that somehing [sic] terrible was about to happen and added our own cries to the others, but it brought no result. The next thing we knew we had crashed through the side of the runway at a point far up in the air and were falling in a terrible mixup of people and cars. That’s all I remember until I felt some one drag me out from under a stack of timber and found it was you.” (meaning Mr. Kurth.)

It has been learned that the shouts of warning urging that the [illegible] be stopped came from Harvey Higgins of 814 Yale st., and Lieut. Lester Hardy of the Goodrich fire department, who occupied seats in the first car. Following the accident, Higgins was found wandering in a dazed condition about the park and was removed to the hospital. Lieut. Hardy was only slightly injured, one leg showing bruises.

“Roller Coaster Accident At Summit Beach Sends Three to Death, With Others Doomed,” Akron Beacon Journal, 8 July 1918, p. 13, col. 2.

A very special “thank you” is in order for the Special Collections Department of the Akron-Summit County Public Library. I emailed my request for more information regarding the roller coaster accident on Saturday and received the results in less than 24 hours. Since I received several days worth of information, I will be breaking the story down into smaller chunks for the rest of this week.

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