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Australian Tourist Dies After Falling 50 Feet From ‘Snapped’ Zip Line Cable

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An Australian father has died and his wife is in hospital with serious injuries after the tourists fell over 50 feet from a zipline attraction in Queensland’s far north.

The couple Dean, 50, and Shannon Sanderson, 48, traveled to the tourist attraction at Camelot Close at Cape Tribulation, while on vaction from their home in Adelaide.

Australian Couple in Zip Line Accident
Dean, 50, and Shannon Sanderson, 48, were on vacation from Adelaide (Photo: Facebook)

Two American tourists who witnessed the fall said the zipline ‘snapped’ and after the couple fell to the ground, Sanderson had screamed out her husband’s name, but there was no response.

Dean Sanderson died at the scene and his wife was flown by Rescue helicopter to Cairns Hospital in a serious condition. She suffered injuries to her shoulder, arm and pelvis. 

Shannon Sanderson was airlifted to hospital (Photo - Sydney Morning Herald)

Samantha Salyer, one of the American tourists who witnessed the incident, told 7 News it was “very scary” and the pair fell “from very high up”.

“There was a loud noise, we turned around, one of the lines had snapped and we saw them fall. It was very scary, they fell from very high up,” she said. 

"They hung there and then both of them just dropped at the same time. She was screaming his name and there was no response and that was probably the worst part for me."

American tourist Joseph Maghe told 7 News
Dean Sanderson was pronounced dead at the scene (Photo-Facebook)

The Sanderson family released a statement on Wednesday.

"Our family is mourning the tragic loss of our husband, father and great friend Dean Sanderson after an accident at Cape Tribulation in Queensland yesterday. His wife Shannon is currently in hospital recovering after also sustaining injuries in the accident. We would like to thank the Queensland Police, Queensland Paramedics and the tremendous staff at the Cairns Hospital for their support. We remember Dean as a loving husband, father, son, brother and friend to all."

Sanderson Family Statement

The Zip-line company director Phoebe Kitto released a statement offering her deepest sympathies to the families and friends of those involved.

“It will be thoroughly investigated by Workplace Health and Safety, which will receive our full co-operation,” she said.

“We are offering counselling to staff and to our patrons.”

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