Man dies after bouncy castle blown away at France water park

MARSEILLE-A father died and his four-year-old daughter was badly injured in France after a bouncy castle in which they were playing at a water park was blown skyward by high winds, prosecutors said Monday. The 35-year-old man had been taken to hospital with his child after the accident on Sunday at the water park in Saint-Maximin-la-Sainte-Baume in France’s southern Var region, hugely popular with tourists in the summer. He died later that day. The structure, some 20 metres (65 feet) long, lifted 50 metres off the ground at the Wonderland Waterpark, with both victims trapped inside, the prosecutor for the nearby town of Draguignan said in a statement. The daughter’s life remains in danger, the prosecutor’s office added. It said the bouncy castle had taken off due to “strong gusts of wind” that were buffeting the area at the time after a spell of hot weather.  An investigation has been opened into involuntary homicide.  Draguignan prosecutor Guy Bouchet told AFP that the management of the park had taken the decision to suspend the bouncy castle activity due to the weather at the very moment the accident happened. “How can a water park that had been accepted on the municipal territory to bring joy and happiness to children be transformed into a machine of death that strikes down an entire family?” the local mayor Alain Decanis wrote on Facebook.  He vowed the investigation opened by prosecutors would provide answers. The child, like her father, had to be resuscitated after suffering cardiac arrest. The Wonderland Waterpark opened only this summer some 40 kilometres (25 miles) outside the town of Aix-en-Provence.

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