Star City ride off-limits after death of customer

Posted at 02/16/2009 10:48 AM | Updated as of 02/16/2009 11:12 AM

A roller coaster ride in a carnival at Pasay City has temporarily ceased operations following the death of one of its customers, police said Monday.

Pasay City Police Chief Inspector Joey Goforth said the Star Flyer--an inverted roller coaster in Star City--has been off-limits after Carmelito Pena fell 15 meters from the ride on Saturday, causing his death.

"The Star Flyer has not been operated while we are conducting the investigation. They'll have to explain how locks are operated in the ride," Goforth said in an interview at ABS-CBN's "Umagang Kay Ganda."

A Star Flyer attendant earlier said that Pena had asked if falling from the ride would kill him. Pena's colleagues also said he had asked permission to go to Star City on his own for unknown reasons.

However, Goforth said it is too early to conclude that Pena committed suicide.

"We can't say as of now. We've just finished the ocular inspection yesterday, and we'll have a conference to get different opinions as to whether the incident was a case of suicide or mechanical failure," he said.

Meanwhile, Star City spokesperson Ed de Leon said the company is welcoming all kinds of investigations in connection with the incident.

"Under Philippine law, we have no legal responsibility (to attend to Pena and his family), but we have a moral responsibility. All medical and funeral expenses are being answered by Star City. We will see how else we can help. In the meantime, we want to know what really happened," de Leon said. With a report from Ryan Chua, ABS-CBN News