Update: Girl's feet amputated while riding Six Flags ride

Update, Wed 10 am: A 13-year-old girl whose feet were severed in an accident on an amusement park ride is in stable condition in a Nashville, Tennessee, hospital her family said in a written statement Tuesday.

Kaitlyn Lasitter, whose name had not previously been released by officials, was riding the Superman Tower of Power ride Thursday at Six Flags Kentucky Kingdom in Louisville when a cable broke loose on the ride, cutting off the girl's feet above the ankles, authorities said.

State officials were investigating the incident.

"The parents of Kaitlyn Lasitter would like to acknowledge everyone across the country that have been supporting their daughter with many positive thoughts and prayers over the last six days," according to the statement, which was issued through Vanderbilt University Medical Center.

Authorities and the hospital have declined to say whether her feet were reattached. The statement included a plea for privacy for the girl's family, and the family has instructed the hospital not to comment further.

The family's statement said no one from the theme park had contacted them since the accident, as park representatives had told reporters.

"At no time has any representative of the theme park been in touch with members of the family," the statement said.

A spokeswoman for Six Flags in New York disputed that account, saying two representatives from Kentucky Kingdom accompanied Lasitter's family to the hospital and stayed for "some time" before the family asked that they leave.

"We are deeply saddened by this incident and of course have genuine concern for the well-being of the entire family. We stand ready to be of any assistance we possibly can," said Kentucky Kingdom spokeswoman Carolyn McClean.

The ride passed inspection in each of the past four years, according to records. The ride lifts passengers 177 feet straight up, then drops them nearly the same distance at speeds reaching 54 miles per hour.

Six Flags shut down similar rides at parks in St. Louis; Gurnee, Illinois; and near Washington as a safety precaution, Goldberg said. Those rides remained closed Tuesday, and were to undergo safety inspections.

Six Flags Over Texas, near Dallas, also has a Superman Tower of Power, but it is not the same ride, Goldberg said.

Cedar Fair Entertainment Co. of Sandusky, Ohio, also shut down drop tower rides at five of its amusement parks for inspection after the accident.

Previously: A teen who lost her feet in an accident at a Kentucky amusement park has undergone surgery, a park spokeswoman said Friday, while two park operators closed similar rides around the country.

The Superman Tower of Power at Louisville's Six Flags Kentucky Kingdom was shut down after Thursday's accident, and Six Flags spokeswoman Wendy Goldberg said Friday the company closed similar rides at parks in St. Louis, Missouri; Gurnee, Illinois; and near Washington, D.C., as a precaution, The Associated Press reported.

Another park operator, Cedar Fair Entertainment Co., closed drop rides at Kings Island near Cincinnati, Ohio; Canada's Wonderland in Toronto, Ontario; Kings Dominion in Doswell, Virginia.; Carowinds, in Charlotte, North Carolina; and Great America in Santa Clara, California, the AP reported.

"We're going to keep these things down until we're certain it's safe," Cedar Fair spokesman Craig Ross told the AP. "We'll wait and see."

Six Flags Kentucky Kingdom spokeswoman Carolyn McLean said she has been in touch with the injured 13-year-old girl's family and believed the girl is still receiving treatment at the University of Louisville Hospital.

Hospital spokeswoman Julie Gordon would not discuss details of the surgery or recovery, citing patient privacy.

The girl's name was not released because she is a minor.

The girl's feet were completely amputated just below the ankle Thursday afternoon while riding the Superman Tower of Power at Six Flags Kentucky Kingdom in Louisville.
Her feet were recovered by Six Flags staff and were sent to the hospital with her, McLean said.

During the Tower of Power ride, passengers are hoisted aloft, suspended momentarily, then pulled down, according to the park's Web site. Passengers -- secured with bars and seat belts but with arms and legs free -- drop 154 feet at 54 mph, stopping "just 20 terrifying feet above the pavement," the Web site says.

A police dispatcher said a cord wrapped around the girl's feet while she was on the ride.

"I seen the car go up. Then, like, the cable broke ... and I heard a lot of people screaming," Chris Stinnett, who was at a ride next to the Tower of Power, told CNN affiliate WDRB/WMYO-TV in Louisville.

"The cable went under the car -- and I seen it pull up and hit a lot of people -- and I seen them bring their legs up," he said.

"We are not confirming that happened," McLean said. "There was a lot of misinformation from witnesses."

The ride will remain closed until a full investigation by state officials and "our team of experts" is conducted, McLean said.

The inspectors will interview staff members, witnesses and speak with the girl and her family, she said.

"Every ride, every investigation is different," she said.

The rest of the park was operating as normal on Friday.

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