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Jon Lewis
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Did Disney Know about Gator Dangers?

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A news story has been published involving a father/attorney, David Hiden, who had a similar experience with his child and an alligator at Walt Disney World last year.  You can read the yahoo story here.

Here is the quote from Mr. Hiden:

The manager couldn’t care less. I remember her words,
‘These are resident pets. They’ve known about them for years,
they’re not dangerous, they’re not going to harm anybody,’”
said Hiden. “I was very upset, very angry, very shocked and I
say, ‘I hope to god I never read about a young kid killed by an
alligator like that one almost did to my son.”

Further, in the article, a park insider suggests that Rich guests who stayed in the “$2,000-a-night waterfront Bora Bora Bungalows were feeding the alligators”.

If these facts are true, Disney should be liable for this child’s death, and while money will never bring back the child, it does talk.  It makes Disney think.  It makes other parks think about safety and the customers.

Another piece of advice in today’s world is stop being lazy and calling, texting and e-mailing.  I tell clients all of the time to document things in writing.  Letters get people’s attention, and they also memorialize complaints, problems and issues.  People can deny deny deny, but if a letter was sent, especially both certified and regular mail, it’s hard to deny that.

While Mr. Hiden’s testimony is important to this issue, had he written a letter (and maybe he did), how can Disney say they were not on notice of a problem with the alligators?