4 injured following malfunction at American Dream mall

EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. — There was a frightening scene at the American Dream mall on Sunday. A huge decoration fell from the ceiling at the water park, injuring four people.

Parents were calling for accountability.

Police said the massive DreamWorks Water Park had to be evacuated after a decorative helicopter fell at around 3 p.m. And of the four people who were hurt, one was taken to a hospital.

Video taken by witnesses shows lifeguards running to help after the large helicopter fell. It ended up upside down in the pool, right next to the end of a waterslide.

“We heard, bang. I thought, technically, it was a bomb,” mother Myra Silva said.

“When it hit the ground everyone could hear it,” Johnny Vas added.

Vas, 16, was at the DreamWorks Water Park with his mom, his 11-year-old sister, and some friends, when they heard that noise and then saw the helicopter in the water.

“Shocked, frightened because I didn’t know where my family was. So I didn’t know if they got hurt, if anyone else got hurt,” Vas said.

Thankfully, his family was okay, but first responders did administer first aid to four people. They’re all expected to be okay, including one who was taken to the hospital.

Witnesses said DreamWorks, which brands itself as the largest indoor water park in North America, was crowded for the holiday weekend.

When asked if there was panic after the helicopter fell, Vas said, “[People were] running around, crying, frightened. Everyone was shocked and everything.”

Vas said he was just under the decorative helicopter earlier in the day with a friend, adding he’s grateful he was in another section when it fell, and his mom is one of many parents seeking an explanation.

“Maintenance, I think, is the number one thing,” Silva said. “It’s, of course, really scary. Do I come back? Not sure at this point.”

CBS2 saw staff and security guarding the entrance to DreamWorks on Sunday night after the water park closed early.

The American Dream mall released a statement saying safety is its top priority and it is investigating to make sure the water park meets safety regulations.

New Jersey State Police said the Division of Consumer Affairs is investigating.

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