Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Tragedy at amusement park

Tragedy at amusement park

Tragedy at amusement park

5 Ansou Lina

A woman died last night after falling from a spinning ride at Phnom Penh’s Dreamland amusement park in an accident the company’s management claim was caused by her intentionally slipping out of a steel safety harness.

Kim Kongkea, a 33-year-old mother of two, was riding The Twister, also known as The Twin Twister, when the accident happened at about 7:15pm.

Speaking from Calmette Hospital, the victim’s aunt, Sek Somaly, said she saw Kongkea’s footwear fall to the ground first.

“Later, I saw my niece fall to the ground,” she said.

Soeun Chanthou, 25, who was sitting next to her on the ride, said she saw her friend fall out of her seat. It took another four minutes for the ride to stop, she said.

Medical staff at Calmette said Kongkea had died by the time she arrived in an ambulance.

Ly Bunsan, operations manager at Dreamland, in Daun Penh district’s Chaktomuk commune, said the woman had boarded the Italian-made ride with friends.

“We were on half-speed and the operator saw the victim acting strangely as far as her gestures go,” he said. “Maybe she has had some kind of panic attack. That’s why we turned off the machine.”

As the ride slowed, Bunsan said, the victim “jumped” from four metres above the ride’s platform and landed a metre further down on the concrete.

Meas Sopheara, the deputy sales and marketing manager, said witnesses had said the woman appeared terrified and was trying to squeeze through her steel safety harness as a friend tried to hold her in.

Sopheara claimed that when the ride stopped, the woman's steel safety harness and a safety bar that covered her seat remained closed.

When a Post reporter arrived at Dreamland after 9pm, the ride was running again with people in it and a sign saying “full extreme”.

“We wanted to show we do not have a technical problem,” Bunsan said. Passengers must be at least 1.3 metres tall to board the ride, but there are no weight limitations.

“She was very small,” Bunsan said. “But I don’t think she was too small [for the ride]. We are very sorry about what has happened.”

Additional reporting by Cheang Sokha


  • Oil producers see oversupply

    Major oil producers said on Sunday that crude supply next year would outstrip demand, calling for new strategies based on production adjustments. Khalid al-Falih, Energy Minister of the world’s top supplier Saudi Arabia, said the kingdom would cut its production by 500,000 barrels per day (

  • Hun Sen to ‘step down’ if he loses Sam Rainsy bet over Kem Sokha

    Hun Sen has promised to step down as prime minister while opposition figure Sam Rainsy pledges to turn himself in as forfeits if the long-term political rivals lose a “bet” over the future of former opposition leader Kem Sokha, who is on bail awaiting trial

  • ‘Historic’ Khmer Rouge tribunal Case 002/2 verdict to be delivered

    The Extraordinary Chambers in the Courts of Cambodia (ECCC) are to deliver the verdict on Friday, in the trial of former Khmer Rouge leaders Nuon Chea and Khieu Samphan, in a pronouncement hailed as a “historic event for Cambodia and the world”. The verdict from

  • Record set for world’s longest dragon boat

    Cambodia broke the world record for the longest dragon boat – a title previously held by China, Guinness World Records adjudicator Pravin Patel said on Monday. He verified the record on the east bank of the Mekong river, in Prey Veng province’s Peamro district. “With