OSHA Cites Operational, Design Failures in La Jolla Fatality


The federal Occupational Safety and Health Administration cited the La Jolla Band of Luiseño Indians for five violations related to the death of Zip Zoom Zipline employee Joaquin Romero, who fell 50 feet from a platform last Oct. 30. Romero died while attempting to catch an arriving guest and was dragged off the platform in the process. He eventually let go and fell 50 feet to the ground.

One of the violations was for failing to install a guardrail, safety net, or other system to prevent this type of fall. OSHA also cited La Jolla Zip Zoom Ziplines for failing to train employees about fall hazards and failing to assess the workplace for hazards. The agency proposes to fine La Jolla $25,000 for the violations, four of which it termed “serious.” The operators have until March 25 to respond to OSHA’s findings.

“If they had simply provided the proper protective equipment, this senseless tragedy could have been prevented,” federal OSHA San Diego Area Director Derek Engard said in a news release. 

Zip Zoom has remained closed since the incident occurred.

For a report on the incident itself, and initial industry reaction to it, see our Nov. 15 Park Briefs report, “Employee Dies in Zip Line Fall.” 



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