In the months since Guardians of the Galaxy: Cosmic Rewind opened at EPCOT, there have been a number of complaints about the flights of exit stairs. Reportedly, Reedy Creek emergency responders have attended to several incidents resulting in injured guests.
Now, after his mother sustained several injuries requiring treatment at a hospital, a WDWNT reader has reached out to share their story in hopes of warning other guests. On August 3, 2022, the two guests exited the ride. They were experiencing dizziness, a common occurrence after the spinning roller coaster.
Upon the descent down one of the flights of exit stairs, the mother was holding on to the handrail when her sneaker got stuck on the rubber flooring. She fell approximately five steps, hitting her face on the metal railing divider.
She was bleeding from the head and nose and experiencing pain. A Cast Member approached but did not have medical supplies, and none were retrieved until the Reedy Creek Fire Department arrived about 15 minutes later. Passing guests offered tissues to help staunch the bleeding.
During the wait for medical assistance, guests exiting the ride continued to descend the stairway past the injured woman, and while the guest reported that the Cast Member seemed concerned, no other assistance was offered.
The guest noted that the Reedy Creek responders did a good job providing care for his mother. One of the paramedics told him that they dislike the Cosmic Rewind exit because of the safety risks and that his mother’s injury was the fourth in that particular section, including broken ankles.
The woman was transported to a local hospital. The doctors there assessed and treated her for a deep laceration under her eyebrow, a fractured nose, a fractured thumb, a fractured ankle, and bruising on her limbs.
Have you ridden Guardians of the Galaxy: Cosmic Rewind? Let us know your experience with the exit stairs in the comments.
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35 thoughts on “Guest Falls and Is Seriously Injured on Exit Stairs After Getting Dizzy on Guardians of the Galaxy: Cosmic Rewind at EPCOT”
I think (and this is just me) more signage is required before you enter the building. Not before getting on the ride. So discerning guests who don’t generally ride coasters don’t get swept into the story of the ride.
This is a problem. I don’t know who’s idea it was to put steep steps on a ride that makes you dizzy. Our 9 year old trippped in these steps getting off the ride July and thank goodness my husband was behind her and I was in front of her to stop her from rolling down the steps. A ramp would’ve been smarter Disney. And safer!
Anywhere there are stairs, there is the potential for people to get hurt. In fact, anywhere there are people, regardless of where they are walking, there is that potential. To call Guardians a “spinning roller coaster” is totally inaccurate. The cars rotate on the coaster, but there is never “spinning”, or repeated rotation. Now, take into account how many people have descended those stairs since the opening of Guardians. Certainly thousands upon thousands. If four people have gotten hurt on the stairs, I’d bet that’s a comparable percentage to how many have gotten hurt on other stairways at Disney. I’m sorry the woman was hurt, and I’m not here to say it’s her fault, but accidents happen. And when accidents happen at Disney, everyone wants to blame someone. If she was dizzy from the ride, perhaps she should have waited for that to pass before trying to navigate stairs. For the record, my family LOVES Guardians…can’t wait to ride it again and again!!!!!
They definitely didn’t think the exit through. It’s a lot of stairs….especially after the ride. I needed to stop on the landing to get my balance back after the ride-which I loved. Disney needs to revamp this exit
Not only does this ride not make you dizzy in any way that should continue after it has stopped, (unless you have a pre-existing condition, like vertigo, or dehydration?) but there is nothing different or unique about this exit than any other. They’re stairs. If you’re feeling disoriented in a way that affects your coordination post-ride, which is an incredibly recognizable feeling especially when you are walking forward toward an exit, you shouldn’t attempt to descend stairs and then blame the placement of them if you fall, you should pause a moment or sit down for a second until you feel OK or oriented again and if you dont regain full coordination of your body, call for help because something is wrong. It shouldn’t be a foreign concept to be responsible for ourselves amid external factors. You are in operation of your body and where it goes in this type of situation. You as an adult must have the capacity to judge whether you feel physically coordinated enough to navigate something like stairs. You shouldn’t just YOLO throw your body around and hope for the best or seek a lawsuit if it doesn’t turn out well? Maybe they should add a bench at the ride exit so the people who need to will feel more inclined to rest a moment/collect themselves. There are dizziness warnings all over the place but that’s clearly not enough to help people understand the feeling or its potential affect on them should it occur.
Rode Guardians of the Galaxy Cosmic Rewind 4 times on the same day this woman was injured (August 3). The exit stairs are a steep incline up a flight, not down. They did not pose any kind of problems for my family, including a teen in a post op knee brace. The ride didn’t cause us any motion sickness either. Fantastic ride!
If there have been four incidents on those stairs that have resulted in injuries as the paramedic stated including broken ankles then it is a clear liability issue.
That poor woman. Why in the world did they build those stairs in the first place? Not only is it a long, poorly-lit flight, not only is it after a spinning coaster that makes a lot of people dizzy or woozy, but it’s 2022. The ADA has been law for 32 years, and practically 10% of WDW parties have a member with mobility challenges that don’t allow for going up or down long flights of stairs. In older rides (like Space Mountain at DL), it’s frustrating but understandable given how long ago the ride was built, but this just opened and had a ton of space to fit into – as evidenced by the giant show building. Ugh. Ways you can tell that no one in Imagineering has a background in – or family member with – physical disabilities.
What other assistance should have been offered? Your website has reported issues with staffing at Ready Creek, it’s clearly an issue but what should the cast member have done other than what they did?
Road it twice now n ‘never’ any problems w/dizziness or walking down the exit, course I spin the Tea Cups as fast as my old body can. 74 n body’s falling apart but i’ll ride Coasters till I’m physically not able
We just rode on the 3 rd also. My husband was so
Dizzy/nauseous we had to sit right where you exit ride for 20 minutes and then we took elevator as he was still too dizzy for stairs. Yeah stairs after a ride like that not a good idea
I’m sorry but this is on the woman entirely. If you aren’t feeling good there are benches to rest on before the stairs. I believe there is also an elevator to by pass the stairs entirely. I feel bad for her but that was on her, there were multiple chances to avoid the fall.
If you know how to walk and know your own body then the exit shouldn’t be an issue. If you need an extra second then wait at the bottom of the stair before you ascend. Pretty simple.
Hind sight is 2020…maybe the needed a short “debriefing” pre-exit show that would give guests affected by the ride a few minutes to recover…also, perhaps the stairs needed more intermediate landings? That would push the stairs out of the building; not sure they had room for that, but safer if someone gets dizzy on a shorter run of steps, rather than a long run of steps.
Unfortunately cast members are not allowed to physically help injured guests for liability issues, not only injuries but for example they can’t help you if want to transfer from a scooter to a restaurant chair, they can get in trouble for that. Only reedy creek teams is allowed to do it.
I am a florida resident and rode this ride many times. I get motion sickness but for some reason this ride has never bothered me. These stair seem like normal stairs to me. The same that are all over the park. I feel like there is an elevator right before the stairs. Why are these people not using it if they are dizzy?
Cosmic Rewind is the most unique and most comfortable roller coaster I’ve ever ridden. However, why the designers created the exit stairs is a real puzzle! I can only guess that was the only possible way to fit the queue, pre-show, 2nd pre-show, loading room, and unloading area into the old “Universe of Energy” pavilion. There are elevators to bring guests up and down that area, so guests that have any dizziness or weakness should avoid the stairs and use the elevators. Although some in my group experienced some disorientation, I felt fine & ran up the stairs. *** ANXIOUSLY AWAITING my next ride of GotGCW! ***
After looking at that staircase…What brainiacs thought that would be the best way to exit a possible motion sickness attraction? And don’t forget it’s a heavy alcohol park.
My experience was that I actually judged whether I felt well enough to take the stairs or if I should take the elevator. I had a choice just like everyone else.
what were the imagineers thinking? That’s what my first thought was, as I approached the 2+flights of exit stairs at the end of Guardians. I wasn’t motion sick after the ride, but I was a little unsteady from the adrenalin! disney used to know how to make efficient ride exits with ramps or moving walks (Haunted House, People Mover, Pirates, Big Thunder, etc…) but more recently have opted for cheaper space saving stairs (Soarin, Flights, and now Guardians) which are far less safe, especially after rides that might leave guests unsteady or disoriented (to repeat the list: Soarin, flights, and Guardians!) Be better, imagineers: design safe rides with safe entrances and exits.
I could certainly see this being a problem. I LOVE this ride and have been slightly dizzy right after getting off, but it has cleared well before I got to the stairs. I would NOT attempt to descend the stairs if I was dizzy, and has that thought just yesterday after I rode it. There is ample room to stop and wait for dizziness to pass. I’m sure something will have to change now even if it is something as simple as a sign cautioning riders not to descend the stairs if they are experiencing any dizziness. My sympathies to those who have been injured.
The person that designed this was stupid. Other attractions have ramps (Soarin, rockin roller, etc) or electric ramps (Pirates of the Caribbean). I plan to take my self propelled scooter because of my peripheral neuropathy. Hopefully, my family and I will be safe in an elevator. Poor design. Disney needs to make a change ASAP
I rode this ride yesterday and when I got to the steep stairway I couldn’t believe my eyes! Folks are coming off a spinning roller coaster and this is how you have to exit. Whoever thought this was a good idea needs to revisit this and get it fixed.
I’ve ridden and really enjoyed the Ride. Seems like a bad design that you exit that high up. Perhaps Disney should install escalators or a gentle sloping ramp. Seems like there used to be more consideration for guest safety and comfort. Example both Expedition Everest at animal studio and the Matterhorn at Disneyland load and exit at ground level.
We rode it in July 2022 and I didn’t expect stairs, annoying while slight dizziness, they rush you down these stairs and the steepness is hard on the knees. Do like any exit make a ramp which you need for handicapped anyway. Or people mover like at airports
I will personally never understand the appeal of rides like this that make you loopy and disoriented. Furthermore, what a liability for Disney this presents. Between the injuries and the vomiting into nearby trash cans, what a PR nightmare (and Disney doesn’t need anymore of those!)
Although it is awful his mom was injured the article title is misleading. Nowhere does it state she was dizzy only that her fall was caused by her sneaker getting stuck.
There are elevators available for guests with disabilities or for anyone who prefers not to climb, then go down the exit stairs.
It’s not necessarily advertised for those not in wheelchairs or not with certain needs.
Wow, careless design flaw. I’ve been on those stairs (and survived) but I can see how others might fall. Big difference walking down stairs in “normal” conditions vs these stairs after you just went for a ride around the cosmos. Love the ride, by the way.
Honestly yes, the elevators should be more obvious but at the end of the day there are elevators. And to me if you are feeling dizzy you need to take a breather before you go down a flight of stairs. This was nothing more than user error that could’ve been avoided had she not attempted to go down the stairs while dizzy. People love to blame Disney for their own mistakes. The stairs are pretty steep but what tall building does not have stairs? That’s why hand rails exist. Now there would be a major issue if there were no railings at all, but there are. I’m sorry she got hurt but she should’ve known better.
I refused to take the stairs, and will continue to take the elevator for this very reason
The stairs are normal and pose no extra effort than any other. People have to remember these are physical rides and the signs state you need to be in good health before entering.
Disney should DROWN in their failure! They’re responsible for this!
This sounds like a major design flaw. Some people might not experience vertigo until they’re walking down the steps.
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