A man from Pittsburgh has filed a lawsuit against an amusement park, claiming that he contracted a serious parasitic infection in his eye after splashing around in the waters of one of the park rides.
Robert Trostle alleges in his lawsuit, filed Tuesday, that his left eye had been splashed with water while he was waiting in line for the Raging Rapids ride at Kennywood Park, Newsweek reports. The amusement park is located in Pennsylvania’s Allegheny County, and is owned by Kennywood Entertainment.
YouTube footage and a description of Raging Rapids from Trostle’s attorney depicts the water ride as sending people down a fake river while aboard open, circular tubes with seats. There are waterfalls and drops along the course of the ride.
On the day that Trostle visited the park, the water was reportedly “dirty, stagnant and sludge-like,” he said. His symptoms got worse over two days, until he was diagnosed with microsporidia keratitis on July 14. According to the lawsuit, the amusement park did not use the correct filtration system and failed to chlorinate their water.
The US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention states that there are at least 15 kinds of microsporidia that can be harmful to humans, and are microscopic. Treatment for eye infections caused by these organisms includes anti-fungal eye drops.
But for Trostle, his treatment involved “an extremely painful surgery where the parasite was scraped out of the eye with a surgical scalpel, and he was required to remain in a dark room for the next two days,” the complaint detailed.
In addition, the infection has left Trostle with persistent problems in his left eye, including blurry vision and trouble with his sight at night. There are parasites remaining in his eye, he claims. He and his counsels are asking for $35,000 in damages, which includes coverage of his medical expenses.
Alan Perer stated that he and his client are sure that the park was the source of the parasite. “There’s no other explanation for what happened to him other than the water. I don’t think I’m going to be riding on it anytime soon.”