March 30, 1999
Busch Gardens, Williamsburg, Virginia introduces to the public their new rollercoaster they named Apollo’s Chariot. What better way to promote it than to hire Fabio who has graced numerous romance novels and has been compared to Apollo. The press was invited, and the cameras rolled as Fabio donned in a red velvet cape was led to the rollercoaster with women dressed as goddesses, two on each side of him to the front car for the inaugural ride.
As the rollercoaster zoomed at 70mph down the first drop of the ride, a goose nesting nearby flew into the speeding ride hitting the front of the car and bouncing off and hitting Fabio in the face. In full view of the media, the cameras show the ride coming to an end with Fabio’s face all bloodied. No bones were broken but there was swelling. The goose however died from the impact. The press was then ushered from the event.
Busch Gardens released a statement saying: “Safety is our number one priority, and our ride engineers are examining ways to enhance the safety of an already safe ride.” Fabio went on Good Morning America and stated “”It was not a freak accident, and it’s going to happen again,” Fabio said. “A person — or even a child — can be killed.” It’s been over 20 years since the incident and not one person was ever struck by a bird. If you go on YouTube you sill see a couple of incidents but it is very rare. I’d love to know the odds of this happening.