Alligator snatches boy in the water at Seven Seas Lagoon

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Alligator snatches boy in the water at Seven Seas Lagoon

A stark reminder that Disney World is in Florida... and to STAY OUT OF THE WATER. As tragic as this is, I sincerely hope this doesn't turn into a law suit and Disney ends up having to fence off the shorelines.

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-us-canada-36535791

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Absolutely heartbreaking!

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Crazy. My wife hates to walk to DHS along the water. I always kid her that she's a chicken, but maybe I'm just dumb. I guess I'll never get her in one of those little zip boats again. If they even allow them after this.

Gators are everywhere down there. I saw one in Rivers of America once. That means they can get to Tom Sawyer Island.

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The Colonel wrote:
Crazy. My wife hates to walk to DHS along the water. I always kid her that she's a chicken, but maybe I'm just dumb. I guess I'll never get her in one of those little zip boats again. If they even allow them after this.

Gators are everywhere down there. I saw one in Rivers of America once. That means they can get to Tom Sawyer Island.

It's going to be interesting to see what (if anything) Disney does after this. I really hope they don't end up fencing off everything or closing walkways.

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I just can't imagine what this family is going through. Tragic.

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Blessings and prayers to the family. Walt Disney World has closed all beach fronts at all resorts.

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I wouldn't set a toe in that disgusting water anyway. But I hope they don't shut down the watersports.

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Let's see, on the beach around 9pm. What time was Wishes last night I wonder.

This is so devastating and my heart is absolutely breaking for this family. I played at the edge of that water, my children played at the edge of that water, my grand children would have one day played at the edge of that water - and sit on the beach, and build sand castles, enjoy the fireworks, and the warm summer nights. I can not even fathom the pain and horror that these parents are going through, my heart is in pieces for them.

I do not believe that there is any blame to be laid in this, other than with a wild animal doing what instinct tells him to do. So far this morning 5 alligators have been trapped and euthanized. I can only hope that they actually get the one who has now developed a taste for human flesh.

It's easy for us Disney regulars to be harsh and curt - "it's Florida, if there is water there are alligators," or "that's what the no swimming signs are for," but that's not something that the casual Disney traveler understands. Everyone doesn't know that just about all of the wildlife in Florida is trying to kill you, or that the majority of the Disney property is wild land. They feel safe inside the Disney bubble, because that is how Disney wants us to feel. AND Disney does a superior job at keeping guests safe from wildlife, but no one can be perfect in that.

I'm stunned, and numb, and aching for my community this week. So much tragedy and pain.

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It's tragic certainly. However, Disney World really isn't a bubble. It's a resort built in Florida swampland.

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I do have an opinion as to who, if anyone, is culpable for this child's death...

but right now the tragedy of it is overwhelming and my thoughts and prayers go out to the grief-stricken, traumatized family of this poor little one. What a horror for those parents, they will be haunted forever.

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Kristen K. wrote:
Let's see, on the beach around 9pm. What time was Wishes last night I wonder.

This is so devastating and my heart is absolutely breaking for this family. I played at the edge of that water, my children played at the edge of that water, my grand children would have one day played at the edge of that water - and sit on the beach, and build sand castles, enjoy the fireworks, and the warm summer nights. I can not even fathom the pain and horror that these parents are going through, my heart is in pieces for them.

I do not believe that there is any blame to be laid in this, other than with a wild animal doing what instinct tells him to do. So far this morning 5 alligators have been trapped and euthanized. I can only hope that they actually get the one who has now developed a taste for human flesh.

It's easy for us Disney regulars to be harsh and curt - "it's Florida, if there is water there are alligators," or "that's what the no swimming signs are for," but that's not something that the casual Disney traveler understands. Everyone doesn't know that just about all of the wildlife in Florida is trying to kill you, or that the majority of the Disney property is wild land. They feel safe inside the Disney bubble, because that is how Disney wants us to feel. AND Disney does a superior job at keeping guests safe from wildlife, but no one can be perfect in that.

I'm stunned, and numb, and aching for my community this week. So much tragedy and pain.

I've been to Disney World many times. I never go near or in the water because of the possible flesh eating bacteria. Not once have I ever thought " better be careful, could be gators". I assume that it's probably due to the safe feeling of the bubble because I know gators are on the golf courses. I understand how this family probably never thought a gator would be lurking either. I certainly won't be going near the water now.

My heart goes out to the family. I couldn't imagine how horrific it was (and is) for them sad

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I have 2 children and cant imagine what these poor people are going through. I don't think there should be any blame put on Disney at all with this, it was a horrific accident but is was an accident. Personally I would have no issues with Disney putting barriers around the beaches to keep them safe, I would hate to see the beaches closed for this. Maybe there should be signs warning of alligators but I don't think Disney has any blame here.

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Kristen K you said it best. My heart breaks for this family. I have seen an alligator only once well at Disney and it was by the Wilderness Lodge area. The first time I heard a cast member mention alligators was this year well we were on the safari at AK Lodge. She stated that if there was water no matter how deep there would be an alligator in it. I am so saddened for the family. This is such a tragic accident. sad

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It is a tragedy for the family and the whole Disney community. My thoughts and prayers go out to the family and to the Orlando area.

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I've thought long and hard about this today and have determined that in all of these horrible situations we look to BLAME someone. We do this to make sense of what has happened I think.

But the fact is that lots of things happen where no one is to BLAME. No one is at FAULT. It was a terrible, horrible freak incident. Yes, I am wise and understand that they built WDW in swamp lands. My DH and I have often scanned for gators because we've wanted to see one. And we never have. I am picturing a family, playing on the beach and letting the little one play in the wet sand or stick his toes in the edge of the water. They weren't "Swimming". I might consider doing it too (not any more!!). I don't think the family was being irresponsible or stupid based on the reports I've read. I agree that Disney INTENTIONALLY makes you feel like you're in a bubble and you're not. Especially, at the Grand Floridian where everything appears perfectly clean and sterile. So I can't fault people for having that happy, comfortable feeling we all get when we're there. And beaches draw people in and look like an open invitation to stick your toes in the water on a hot night. And though I Don't think Disney is at fault for this either I think the no swimming signs should be changed to "Warning - Possible Alligators - No Swimming" signs to remind people that they aren't in a bubble but are in fact amongst the wildlife.

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Such a tragedy. I can't imagine what the parents are going through. I'm glad they were able to recover the body so the family can have some peace of mind..

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TinkASL wrote:
I've thought long and hard about this today and have determined that in all of these horrible situations we look to BLAME someone. We do this to make sense of what has happened I think.

But the fact is that lots of things happen where no one is to BLAME. No one is at FAULT. It was a terrible, horrible freak incident. Yes, I am wise and understand that they built WDW in swamp lands. My DH and I have often scanned for gators because we've wanted to see one. And we never have. I am picturing a family, playing on the beach and letting the little one play in the wet sand or stick his toes in the edge of the water. They weren't "Swimming". I might consider doing it too (not any more!!). I don't think the family was being irresponsible or stupid based on the reports I've read. I agree that Disney INTENTIONALLY makes you feel like you're in a bubble and you're not. Especially, at the Grand Floridian where everything appears perfectly clean and sterile. So I can't fault people for having that happy, comfortable feeling we all get when we're there. And beaches draw people in and look like an open invitation to stick your toes in the water on a hot night. And though I Don't think Disney is at fault for this either I think the no swimming signs should be changed to "Warning - Possible Alligators - No Swimming" signs to remind people that they aren't in a bubble but are in fact amongst the wildlife.

I agree with everything you've said here. My heart goes out to that poor family <3

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This was recently posted:

After yesterday's tragic accident in which an alligator pulled a small boy into the Seven Seas Lagoon, Walt Disney World has removed all jokes from the Jungle Cruise attraction that reference children and crocodiles. One joke on the classic Magic Kingdom ride tell parents to "watch their children, or the crocodiles will."

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Magic Mirror wrote:
This was recently posted:

After yesterday's tragic accident in which an alligator pulled a small boy into the Seven Seas Lagoon, Walt Disney World has removed all jokes from the Jungle Cruise attraction that reference children and crocodiles. One joke on the classic Magic Kingdom ride tell parents to "watch their children, or the crocodiles will."

I am sorry for the family and their loss, but I figured things like that would start to happen now. Next will be the Crock from Peter Pan or the entire ride. Will they take the Crock float out of the Electric Water Pageant too?

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MrHub wrote:
Magic Mirror wrote:
This was recently posted:

After yesterday's tragic accident in which an alligator pulled a small boy into the Seven Seas Lagoon, Walt Disney World has removed all jokes from the Jungle Cruise attraction that reference children and crocodiles. One joke on the classic Magic Kingdom ride tell parents to "watch their children, or the crocodiles will."

I am sorry for the family and their loss, but I figured things like that would start to happen now. Next will be the Crock from Peter Pan or the entire ride. Will they take the Crock float out of the Electric Water Pageant too?

It will be sad if they do end up removing all references to crocs and gators. They might even ban Croc shoes from the parks.

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KenJ wrote:
MrHub wrote:
Magic Mirror wrote:
This was recently posted:

After yesterday's tragic accident in which an alligator pulled a small boy into the Seven Seas Lagoon, Walt Disney World has removed all jokes from the Jungle Cruise attraction that reference children and crocodiles. One joke on the classic Magic Kingdom ride tell parents to "watch their children, or the crocodiles will."

I am sorry for the family and their loss, but I figured things like that would start to happen now. Next will be the Crock from Peter Pan or the entire ride. Will they take the Crock float out of the Electric Water Pageant too?

It will be sad if they do end up removing all references to crocs and gators. They might even ban Croc shoes from the parks.

Never even thought about that!

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MrHub wrote:
KenJ wrote:
MrHub wrote:
Magic Mirror wrote:
This was recently posted:

After yesterday's tragic accident in which an alligator pulled a small boy into the Seven Seas Lagoon, Walt Disney World has removed all jokes from the Jungle Cruise attraction that reference children and crocodiles. One joke on the classic Magic Kingdom ride tell parents to "watch their children, or the crocodiles will."

I am sorry for the family and their loss, but I figured things like that would start to happen now. Next will be the Crock from Peter Pan or the entire ride. Will they take the Crock float out of the Electric Water Pageant too?

It will be sad if they do end up removing all references to crocs and gators. They might even ban Croc shoes from the parks.

Never even thought about that!

Oh come on now. Those are all very different things. Removing one small joke that right now has a very personal edge to it is appropriate. And we're getting upset about them adding fences or removing floats that haven't even happened yet and very well may not happen. It's been one day since someone's baby DIED in an incredibly traumatic accident.

Quite frankly I'm shocked by the callousness I'm reading from some here. This has always been an awesome, supportive, and kind group of people. I am certain that if any of your children or grandchildren or spouses had been dragged into the water by a living, breathing alligator the response would be very different. How about we step back from the blame game and the selfish concerns that the park we love so much might make some small changes we don't necessarily like and remember why so many people come to THIS message board and not the others...because we're better than that. sad

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TinkASL wrote:
MrHub wrote:
KenJ wrote:
MrHub wrote:
Magic Mirror wrote:
This was recently posted:

After yesterday's tragic accident in which an alligator pulled a small boy into the Seven Seas Lagoon, Walt Disney World has removed all jokes from the Jungle Cruise attraction that reference children and crocodiles. One joke on the classic Magic Kingdom ride tell parents to "watch their children, or the crocodiles will."

I am sorry for the family and their loss, but I figured things like that would start to happen now. Next will be the Crock from Peter Pan or the entire ride. Will they take the Crock float out of the Electric Water Pageant too?

It will be sad if they do end up removing all references to crocs and gators. They might even ban Croc shoes from the parks.

Never even thought about that!

Oh come on now. Those are all very different things. Removing one small joke that right now has a very personal edge to it is appropriate. And we're getting upset about them adding fences or removing floats that haven't even happened yet and very well may not happen. It's been one day since someone's baby DIED in an incredibly traumatic accident.

Quite frankly I'm shocked by the callousness I'm reading from some here. This has always been an awesome, supportive, and kind group of people. I am certain that if any of your children or grandchildren or spouses had been dragged into the water by a living, breathing alligator the response would be very different. How about we step back from the blame game and the selfish concerns that the park we love so much might make some small changes we don't necessarily like and remember why so many people come to THIS message board and not the others...because we're better than that. sad

Ok I have to say a couple of things...first yes this was terrible and as a parent and grandparent I can't even imagine the hell this family is going through and am sure they will never be the same. The only thing I hope for is there is a 4 year girl to watch and love so hopefully they will focus on her...not now but soon I hope. And I think with all that has happened in FL we are all trying to come to terms with this and the shootings. And sometimes we don't mean to be cruel or unfeeling but we need to laugh or else I think we will all be in a rubber room. So yes it may seem like callousness but I think people are just trying to have a release...right, wrong or indifferent. So that is my take on all this and for my health I can't keep talking about this so that is all am going to say on this matter. Hopefully this is not intended to offend anyone this is just my thoughts on this whole awful events that have happened in FL.

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kathys wrote:
TinkASL wrote:
MrHub wrote:
KenJ wrote:
MrHub wrote:
Magic Mirror wrote:
This was recently posted:

After yesterday's tragic accident in which an alligator pulled a small boy into the Seven Seas Lagoon, Walt Disney World has removed all jokes from the Jungle Cruise attraction that reference children and crocodiles. One joke on the classic Magic Kingdom ride tell parents to "watch their children, or the crocodiles will."

I am sorry for the family and their loss, but I figured things like that would start to happen now. Next will be the Crock from Peter Pan or the entire ride. Will they take the Crock float out of the Electric Water Pageant too?

It will be sad if they do end up removing all references to crocs and gators. They might even ban Croc shoes from the parks.

Never even thought about that!

Oh come on now. Those are all very different things. Removing one small joke that right now has a very personal edge to it is appropriate. And we're getting upset about them adding fences or removing floats that haven't even happened yet and very well may not happen. It's been one day since someone's baby DIED in an incredibly traumatic accident.

Quite frankly I'm shocked by the callousness I'm reading from some here. This has always been an awesome, supportive, and kind group of people. I am certain that if any of your children or grandchildren or spouses had been dragged into the water by a living, breathing alligator the response would be very different. How about we step back from the blame game and the selfish concerns that the park we love so much might make some small changes we don't necessarily like and remember why so many people come to THIS message board and not the others...because we're better than that. sad

Ok I have to say a couple of things...first yes this was terrible and as a parent and grandparent I can't even imagine the hell this family is going through and am sure they will never be the same. The only thing I hope for is there is a 4 year girl to watch and love so hopefully they will focus on her...not now but soon I hope. And I think with all that has happened in FL we are all trying to come to terms with this and the shootings. And sometimes we don't mean to be cruel or unfeeling but we need to laugh or else I think we will all be in a rubber room. So yes it may seem like callousness but I think people are just trying to have a release...right, wrong or indifferent. So that is my take on all this and for my health I can't keep talking about this so that is all am going to say on this matter. Hopefully this is not intended to offend anyone this is just my thoughts on this whole awful events that have happened in FL.

I have to agree with you. Some people cope better with light humor. I don't think any thing that anyone has said is callous or meaning to be hurtful or disrespectful. But you know, some people WILL IN FACT overreact and demand that these things be removed. Sad but true, it's the world we live in......

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Anytime a child dies it's an unbearable tragedy. This is just shocking the way it happened; on vacation in Disney World. Unreal.

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Throwing in my 2 cents...First, the obvious. This is such an awful and tragic accident and I feel so immensely terrible for the family of this little boy and for the little boy, himself, whose last moments must have been so terrifying and confusing. I feel confident that Disney is bending over backwards to support this family right now and if tragedy had to strike their family in such a way, they couldn't be in better hands or find a group of people who cares more and easing their suffering.

That being said, I won't be surprised if Disney is found in some way negligent for not having adequate and specific enough signage. Like many of you, I spend a lot of time in Florida and I would never dream of setting foot in a lake on Disney property. From gators to snakes to brain eating amoebas, there are literally dozens of things in natural bodies of water in Florida that can kill you. But, if you're not from the area and don't study it the way that many of us do, you could EASILY assume that the shore of the lake is perfectly safe to splash around in. In Pennsylvania, we have no coastline, but we have lakes. Tons of them. Sure the water if filthy and disgusting, but that doesn't stop thousands of people from taking they're annual "beach" trip at our 3-mile long Raystown Lake every year. Often portions of the lake have swimming restrictions, but for perfectly innocuous reasons like a shortage of lifeguards. Why are there "no swimming" signs at this lake? A family from Kansas could have reasonably deduced that the bottom drops off very quickly just past the shoreline but that they could play safely as long as they could see the bottom. After all, it's not the ocean, so there's no powerful undertow or rip current to be worried about. They likely had no understanding that an alligator can lurk undetected in very shallow water.

I've never really studied the signage in the area--what it says, where it's located, etc.--but the fact that I can't even recall those details despite having spent quite a bit of time on Polynesian beach and walking the Crescent Lake area including the path to DHS would lead me to believe that the signage really could stand to be enhanced. Disney does do an amazing job at managing the wildlife in the swampland, but even the best system isn't perfect and I think that more robust signage at the point where the information needs to be conveyed is the best way to combat visitors' spotty knowledge of how water safety applies to Florida. It's easy to "Monday morning quarterback" any situation, but I hope that Disney will keep the changes as minor as possible while making them meaningful enough to hopefully spare another family this pain. I think that fencing off the shoreline is overkill. There is no such thing as a system that is 100% foolproof and we do have to accept personal responsibility for following the rules that are meant to protect our safety and accept that no matter how many safety policies and protocols that Disney institutes, accidents will still happen.

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CSR Boards are posting that all their hammocks around their sandy beaches of their lake have been removed.

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I'm certain Disney will be making some changes to things based on what happened. They will most likely change the signage from "No Swimming" to a more direct message like "Danger - alligators may be present". But even then, there will be those that don't pay attention and go in the water anyway. People don't think anything will happen to them, until it does.

BTW, the Croc shoes comment was obviously meant as light humor. Too bad it has to be spelled out for some.

What happened was tragic and I feel bad for the kid who lost his life.

ALWAYS assume there is an alligator in any body of water in Florida. I'm from Canada and even I know that.

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I just read an article that states:

According to reports, Disney's policy is to monitor the size of the gators in that lagoon, with those exceeding four feet targeted for removal. A spokesman was not immediately available to comment Thursday on the policy.

It also stated the post accident changes to enhance safety are most likely coming down from Disney's insurance company that will want a complete re-evaluation of the properties as well as the internal people wanting to act quickly to reverse negative image problems resulting from this incident.

(via Fox News)

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KenJ wrote:
BTW, the Croc shoes comment was obviously meant as light humor. Too bad it has to be spelled out for some.

It didn't need to be "spelled out" for me. I'm not an idiot and fully understood. I don't think it's funny. I think it's callous. "Joking" about the removal of parade floats or croc shoes isn't even sort of funny at this time. If your kid had been dragged into the water and drowned by an alligator, a fate no parent from outside the Florida area would EVER even imagine could happen to their child, would you think that was funny?? No. Would you think it was funny after sitting around all day waiting for them to drag more alligators out of the water hoping that they find your baby's body? No. Would you find it funny when you were sitting there wondering WHY you had to let your baby wade in that water, and WHY you even went down to that beach. No. Your heart would be shattered into a million pieces. This is a PUBLIC forum which means that theoretically any one of those family members could see this and I strongly imagine that they wouldn't share in your little "joke".

And yes, some people will overreact. And yes, you probably think I'm one of those people now. But I don't care because I don't think that worrying about whether they're going to make some ultimately insignificant-to-our-vacation changes to WDW is even on the same planet as the immense heartache that family is feeling. And just because something isn't intended to be callous, doesn't mean it isn't.

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TinkASL wrote:
KenJ wrote:
BTW, the Croc shoes comment was obviously meant as light humor. Too bad it has to be spelled out for some.

It didn't need to be "spelled out" for me. I'm not an idiot and fully understood. I don't think it's funny. I think it's callous. "Joking" about the removal of parade floats or croc shoes isn't even sort of funny at this time. If your kid had been dragged into the water and drowned by an alligator, a fate no parent from outside the Florida area would EVER even imagine could happen to their child, would you think that was funny?? No. Would you think it was funny after sitting around all day waiting for them to drag more alligators out of the water hoping that they find your baby's body? No. Would you find it funny when you were sitting there wondering WHY you had to let your baby wade in that water, and WHY you even went down to that beach. No. Your heart would be shattered into a million pieces. This is a PUBLIC forum which means that theoretically any one of those family members could see this and I strongly imagine that they wouldn't share in your little "joke".

And yes, some people will overreact. And yes, you probably think I'm one of those people now. But I don't care because I don't think that worrying about whether they're going to make some ultimately insignificant-to-our-vacation changes to WDW is even on the same planet as the immense heartache that family is feeling. And just because something isn't intended to be callous, doesn't mean it isn't.

Whatever. And by the way, I just buried my mother today and I still have a sense of humor.