How Disneyland's Mark Twain riverboat sank

It's well known that Disneyland's Mark Twain paddle-wheeler sank on its opening day, but it wasn't until Friday's first-hand report of the sinking of the Mark Twain that the facts were in the public record. Terry O'Brien, a former Disneyland employee, has admitted to sinking the Mark Twain by overloading it:

Pretty soon, we heard the toot-toot signal that meant disaster. And everyone wondered what had happened." What had happened was that the boat, which actually made its way around the lagoon on a rail, had sunk off the track and into the mud. There were too many people on board.

"It took about 20 to 30 minutes to get it fixed and back on the rail and it came chugging in. As soon as it pulled up to the landing, all the people rushed to the side to get off, and the boat tipped into the water again, so they all had to wade off through the water, and some of them were pretty mad."

His boss came to ask O'Brien how many people he'd put on the boat. "And I said about 250. And he said, 'Well, better keep it at about 200.' Then I remembered I had the clicker in my pocket. I looked and was shocked to see I'd put 508 people on the boat. I never told anyone until now." But he did make sure it never happened again.


(via The Disney Blog)