Alton Towers horror crash deemed ‘human error’ after investigation

The horrific Alton Towers rollercoaster crash, in which two young women lost legs, has been deemed the fault of ‘human error.’


by Ellie Hooper |
Published on

In a statement from Merlin Entertainments, who own the park, they said their investigation had concluded and that the manual override of The Smiler ride led to the tragic incident that followed.

There were found to be no technical or mechanical problems with the ride itself, and the mistake was purely an individual one, caused when the correct protocols were not followed.

Leah Washington speaks to This Morning about losing her leg
Leah Washington speaks to This Morning about losing her leg

Five people were seriously injured in the crash in June, with two women - Victoria Balch and Leah Washington - losing their legs after the incident.

According to a spokesperson for the park ‘a ride shutdown message was misunderstood by staff at the ride.’

‘This led to a decision to manually restart the ride, overriding the control system without appropriate safety protocols being followed correctly.’

Alton Towers have said that when the ride reopens next year, it will feature an additional level of authorisation so that a manual override cannot take place without a senior member of staff.

‘We are confident that lessons have been learned and that appropriate action has been taken to address all the issues raised by our investigation,’ said the park spokeswoman.

Just so you know, whilst we may receive a commission or other compensation from the links on this website, we never allow this to influence product selections - read why you should trust us