The accident was reported about 4 p.m. on Sturday at Castle Park, 3500 Polk St., Riverside Fire Department Capt. Brian Guzzetta said.
The failure of a pump that normally provides an ample flow of water to slow the ride as it descends down a slope caused the car the family was in to gain too much speed and hit the bottom unusually hard, throwing the three out of the car, Guzzetta said.
They were quickly removed from the shallow water, but the man suffered injuries that left him in critical condition, Guzzetta said.
The log ride and adjacent rides were shut down for investigations by the city of Riverside and Castle Park, he said. The rest of the rides remained open.
The log ride flipped over with a mother, father and their son inside, according to NBC Los Angeles. The mother was ejected from the ride, the fire department said.
The ride was shut down but the park is open. The Division of Occupational Safety and Health (DOSH) will conduct an inspection and investigation of the ride.
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“First and foremost — our thoughts and prayers are with the guests involved,” Castle Park said in a statement. “Safety is our number one priority and we have begun conducting a full investigation.”
Every ride is inspected and signed off before it opens on a daily basis, a company spokeswoman also told the outlet.