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Mother blames Beech Grove attraction for daughter’s injury, accuses employees of negligence

BEECH GROVE, Ind. -- An Indianapolis-area mom blames a Beech Grove attraction for her daughter’s broken foot.

She says the negligence of employees at Greatimes Family Fun Park and poor construction of the go-karts led to the accident.

“I don’t like wearing a cast, it’s like I can’t even move my foot,” said Johnna Harper. “I miss riding my bike.”

Last Friday Jacqueline says she had to be carried out of the fun park after an employee failed to flip a switch that prevents the go-kart from moving while kids get in.

“I heard my daughter screaming, he ran over to my daughter,” said Jacqueline. “His only response was blankness. He looked at me, he ran up to me. He ran around the attraction. He did everything but respond.”

With employees doing nothing, Jacqueline Harper says she ran to lift the kart off her daughter. Then she realized each kart has a hole between the gas pedal and the track.

Jacqueline thinks the gap is a safety hazard for kids. Without it, she says Johnna’s foot wouldn’t have slipped through, dragging her boot until the kart stopped.

“I’m scared for the child that gets on and has a sandal,” said Jacqueline. “I’m scared for the child that’s smaller.”

Jacqueline Harper used to bring her kids here to Greatimes Family Fun Park all the time. But she says management’s response to her concerns about why her daughter’s foot ended up broken and rider safety in general has made her consider never coming back.

Before they left for the hospital, Jacqueline asked employees to shut down the ride until the gap was fixed on each kiddie kart. She says she was told only the general manager, who was out of town, could make that decision.

After calling back later and being told the same thing, Jacqueline feels certain they wouldn’t be taking steps to make the rides safer.

The general manager couldn’t confirm any information or potential changes Wednesday night, but said he would provide updates sometime Thursday.

“Safety specialists could come through and make sure that everything is up to par,” said Jacqueline. “Beyond that, I think modifications need to be made to the kiddie cart.”

But even if they do all that, Johnna says she’ll never get in a go-kart again.

“I’m afraid it will break my foot again when it heals,” said Johnna.