(Closed) Toddler Snatched by Alligator at Disney Resort

posted 3 years ago in The Lounge
Post # 106
Member
6526 posts
Bee Keeper
  • Wedding: September 2013

voovoo:  no, we cannot blame the parents in either situation. We also should not be saying its a race thing. I was on FB and there was a huge debate saying the reason people are so distraught over this little boy who died is because he was white. I think its absolutely ridiculous to say that.

I think the parents were uneducated about the scary waters in FL and I dont mean that as an insult. Its not something thats known by everyone. We cant assume that wveryone should know about the large population of alligators

 

Further more, having a No swimming sign is hardly a warning of “beware of alligstors” 

Post # 107
Member
2543 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: August 2012

Obviously a big problem is that there is a wide interpretation of a sgin that says

NO SWIMMING

Look at the pictures of this beach – it looks clean and inviting. It’s a FAMILY BEACH on a Disney resort! I would take a no NO SWIMMING sign to mean that it is unsteady waters and maybe you could get caught in a riptide if you went out too far. Or maybe it’s polluted. Or lack of lifeguards. Something like that, and I would think nothing of wading along the edge. Wading at the shoreline is not swimming. And I Sure as heck wouldn’t take a  NO SWIMMING sign on this beach to mean danger of crcocodiles.

That sign was a big problem. Does anyone know why that sign was there anyway? Why No swimming? (presuming that Disney was not aware of a crocodile possibility)

 

  • This reply was modified 3 years, 2 months ago by  Sunshine09.
Post # 108
Member
459 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: July 2017

ladybirdsauce:  Interesting take.  I mean, personally I agree with you on no swimming means I won’t be touching the water.  However I think the “no swimming” wording leaves more room to argue loopholes and what “swimming” means to different people.  I work with mostly college students, and sometimes general members of the public, and have found that I really need to be extremely exact in my wording, otherwise it’s their interpretation of what the words could mean or mean to them.

Post # 109
Member
2543 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: August 2012

Ok: this is all I need to read to come to a conclusion. The words “false sense of safety” I think is bang on.

Executive director of the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission Nick Wiley said in a press conference that Disney employees “routinely take out alligators in the lakes and on the property at large,” so they’re clearly aware of the issue.Further lulling guests into a false sense of safety is the fact that the lagoon doesn’t look like a wildlife habitat; not only does it lack signage or fences, the area where Graves was attacked was a beach, complete with sand, umbrellas, and lounge chairs. The hotel was reportedly hosting a family movie night on the beach when the incident occurred. The Seven Seas Lagoon was constructed in 1971, and was originally designed for swimming and surfing, according to Florida’s News 13. Use of an artificial wave machine was eventually discontinued after it caused erosion to the beaches, and swimming was prohibited once bacteria was discovered in the water. The lagoon is still used for boating, fishing, and even kayaking, even though it’s known to be home to a number of predators.

Post # 110
Member
5978 posts
Bee Keeper

There’s a huge difference between a sign that says ‘keep off the grass’ and ‘keep off the grass-may contain landmines’. IMO Disney did too little, either through their own ignorance or putting tourism dollars ahead of public knowledge. As for blaming the parents, I’m sure they’ll torture themselves for the rest of their lives with ‘what if’s’….no need for us to pile on. My heart breaks for the little boy, but it breaks for his parents too. 

Post # 111
Member
2543 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: August 2012

RobbieAndJuliahaha:  That’s an excellent comparison. ‘Keep off the grass’ invites the thinking of risking getting in trouble but if no ones watching you’ll just go fast and hope to not get caught. ‘Keep off the grass-may contain landmines’…well I doubt anyone would take that shortcut.

Post # 112
Member
60 posts
Worker bee
  • Wedding: March 2016

MrsMeowton:  I’m sure it’s semantics, but you stated “it doesn’t matter if it looks like a beach or not, you NEVER go in or near fresh water in Florida, period.” I just disagree with that generalization (which I took to mean whether or not warning signs are posted). Fresh water areas are used all the time for water recreation in this state. That said, obviously, warnings should be heeded such as no swimming, but I definitely agree with you the resort should have had better warning signs and apparently knew of the alligators, so I see their actions as negligent. 

Post # 113
Member
2149 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: July 2017

RobbieAndJuliahaha:  but rules exist for a reason if you have a ‘no trespassing’ sign and someone trespasses and gets bit by your dog (has happened to us so I know) it is THEIR fault – you dont need to specify WHY they can’t trespass – its a rule and rules exist for safety

as I said before Ive never been to florida but im highly aware of aligators and wouldnt go swimming in a non swimming pool however I could of been neive enough to think a hotel resort wouldnt have wild animals in it (even though I wouldnt be swimming anyway) but the big issue is ignoring a sign to go IN the water vs. lack of signage that killer things can come OUT of the water…

what if this young child died from exposure to internal flesh eating amoeba’s? (which infect disneys water way and are KNOWN to have led to perminant shut down attraction and abandonment of lakes even though they are safe for healthy adults they can kill people with immune problems or the young/elderly)

what if the kid drowned because it got tangled in underwater debree?

what if the kid slipped on a week dune and got sucked under?

what if the integrety of the sand was quicksand?

what if the lake is poluted?

what if the PH is off and its acidic?

any and all of these can be true and more

they don’t need to tell you WHY you can’t go in the water just that you can’t… the difference with aligators from the above is that they could still come up on to land and grab things, they can be shockingly fast when charging in a straight line when they want so people should be warned that the danger isn’t JUST limited to the water

had the aligator walked up and snached the child of the sand there would be no dispute at all and that family would own disney but they ignored both common sense AND safety signs

Post # 115
Member
9326 posts
Buzzing Beekeeper
  • Wedding: August 2012

This whole thing just sickens me, and people blaming the parents even more so.

I’ve been to many beaches that said “no swimming”, and that definitely didn’t seem to mean don’t even poke your toes in at the edge of the water. Generally it was due to strong currents or water quality. I’m aware that there are gators in FL, but I honestly would not have thought of it at a resort at Disney which was specifically used for entertainment purposes.

Post # 116
Member
5978 posts
Bee Keeper

btob17: This is a manmade lagoon on Disney property, vacationing families aren’t thinking of alligators and flesh eating bacterias and sinkholes a few feet from scheduled hotel events. I’ve taken my kids to Disney World when they were smaller, and I don’t think I was by any means a negligent parent, but dangers lurking in the heart of Disney resorts just wasn’t on my radar- maybe this was naive of me, but I still feel people are judging grieving parents way too harshly. 

When we visited the Kennedy Space Center @  Cape Canaveral by the Atlantic Ocean (about an hour and a half by tour bus from Orlando), there were alligator an/ or alligator and shark warning signs EVERYWHERE- plus there were parts of the tour we weren’t allowed off the tour bus. But the folks at NASA made sure that visiting tourists and others who may be naive about alligators were fully made aware. So the comparative lack of ANY such warnings on Disney property would lead a Toronto, Canada native like me to think there’s only alligators near the ocean- where there are alligator warning signs. Disney purposely crafts an image of an idyllic family paradise, I guess they don’t want realistic graphic warnings to spoil this pristine image. 

As for my ‘keep off the grass’ analogy-  if you didn’t know the REAL dangers of stepping even a foot onto the grass, you might not think twice about letting your toddler walk along the edge of it if the hot pavement was hurting his feet or to briefly retrieve a puppy or a ball or a frisbee from the grass. But if you knew it was literally LIFE THREATENING to even step a toe onto the grass, that’s a different matter entirely. If you knew the real dangers, the actual reasons, for sure you wouldn’t risk your kids or yourself- you wouldn’t let them anywhere NEAR the grass. But then again, you might even re-think staying at the resort and that, right there, IMO is the reason for the lack of proper warnings that reflect the severity of the dangers. 

Post # 117
Member
13528 posts
Honey Beekeeper
  • Wedding: November 1999

This story is so sad, and so is blaming the parents.

Darling Husband and I had a discussion about this.  I’m not from Florida, he is.  I would not assume (especially at Disney) that I couldn’t go in water on a Disney resort.  He wouldn’t go in any fresh water because of the danger.  That’s the difference from growing up there or not.  Disney should have had better signage.  

Further, “no swimming” and “don’t go in the water” are two different instructions.  If you don’t want people in the water, make a sign that says there are alligators, don’t go in the water, and don’t make it look like an attractive beach.  

I don’t find blame with anyone in this situation, just sadness and a tragic loss of life way too soon.

Post # 119
Member
52 posts
Worker bee

yourhandinmine:  I guess the distinction would be in the depth maybe. A kid could be in a few inches of water, but you might assume no swimming meant not going further out. You’d have to be a few feet out to swim I guess.

Post # 120
Member
52 posts
Worker bee

btob17:  Come on mate…referring to a dead two year old as ‘it’ is a bit harsh.

I would honestly assume any water etc around a man made beach metres from the hotel was pretty safe. Can’t say what I’d do about the no swimming signs. I suppose I agree with you in so far as I’d probably take that to mean don’t go in the water, but I can understand people thinking they can dip their toes in, but not swim out into the depths.

Poor parents. They’ll be hard enough on themselves over this.

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