Disney's Pirates of the Caribbean Ride Keeps Chopping Off Tourists' Fingers

If you've ever enjoyed the cheesy pleasures of Disney World's Pirates of the Caribbean ride, you've surely noted the numerous signs advising guests to keep their hands and arms inside the cars. It seems those are no idle warnings.

Pirates of the Caribbean, in fact, is a voracious finger-eating monster. Just a little more than a week after a British tourist lost parts of two fingers to the ride comes news this morning that a 12-year-old boy sacrificed four fingers to the cruel gods of overly drawn-out Johnny Depp franchises.

The news comes via Disney World's quarterly report of injuries suffered at the theme park, which Disney agreed to turn over to state authorities in lieu of tougher amusement park safety regulations.

The report shows that earlier this year, the 12-year-old severely lacerated four fingers on the "log flume"-style ride. (The New York Daily News says he lost those fingers, but the Orlando Sentinel says Disney declined to release more information about his injuries.)

There's no doubt, however, that on July 10 a British tourist had the tips of his ring and pinkie fingers lopped off on his right hand while rolling through the amusement.

The new finger-mangling on the Pirates ride is one of a dozen injuries Disney revealed in the report, which covers this April through June. Most of the others involve elderly patrons, such as a 72-year-old woman who passed out at Big Thunder Mountain Railroad and a 70-year-old woman with chest pains at Epcot's Mission: Space.

But the digit-hungry Pirates ride cares not your age. Dangle your fingers in the water at your own risk.

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Tim Elfrink is a former investigative reporter and managing editor for Miami New Times. He has won the George Polk Award and was a finalist for the Goldsmith Prize for Investigative Reporting.
Contact: Tim Elfrink