Guest Claims Man Abandoned Young Child While He Enjoyed Iconic Attraction

Man abandons child at Space Mountain Disneyland
Credit: Disney

When Walt Disney opened Disneyland in 1955, he wanted a magical place that adults could enjoy just as much as children. That is why Disneyland Park and Disney California Adventure — which opened in 2001 — are full of rides and attractions that cater to adults and children of all ages.

There are beloved boat rides like “it’s a small world” and Storybook Land Canal Boats to adrenaline-inducing rides like Guardians of the Galaxy – Mission: BREAKOUT!

Mission Breakout

Credit: Disney

One of Disneyland’s most iconic attractions is Space Mountain, in Tomorrowland. Space Mountain takes guests on a thrilling ride through the deepest parts of space. The ride is full of twists and turns, and even some sudden drops. Because of the intensity of the attraction, guests must be at least 40 inches if they want to ride.

Disney knows that not every guest who visits its theme parks will be able to ride every attraction, so they offer rider swaps. Rider swap allows guests to ride an attraction while someone in their party waits with a younger guest. The adults can then swap, and the other person can ride without having to wait in line again.

Space Mountain Disneyland

Credit: Disney

Related: Parents Abandon Child at Disney for an HOUR as Videos Go Viral

However, one guest claimed that a parent did not want to take advantage of the rider swap and did something shocking.

Redditor u/TheLadyCarpenter said that she was in line to ride Space Mountain. She said a man, his wife or girlfriend, and their two young children were in front of them. One was clearly not tall enough to ride the attraction. However, when it came time to board, the man simply put the young child off to the side and went on his way.

The child was allegedly left with Disney cast members. The Redditor claimed that the cast member had no idea what to do with the child. She said that the child began crying while the cast member continued to try to board guests while also keeping an eye on the “abandoned” child.

tomorrowland entrance sign magic kingdom

Credit: Brian McGowan, Unsplash

She said she did not see what happened at the end, since she boarded the ride. However, she claimed that cast members were still discussing it when she got off the ride. She said that the father was a fault, but that the cast members also weren’t trained.

The full account reads:

Last week while visiting Disneyland, my family and I were in line for Space Mountain. A man with his wife/gf/SO was just in front of us with his two young kids, one clearly not tall enough. The man gets on the ride with his SO and the taller kid, then drops the other kid on the exit platform and leaves on the ride! The small child was terrified and so confused! Cast members were not only shocked but had no idea what to do, as the train car had left the platform before anyone turned to see this kid left alone. There was no communication between the man to a CM. He just left the kid there! This poor child started crying and the CM was trying to do her real job of making sure people are safely off the train and not babysitting this child. I felt so badly for the CM but clearly she, or anyone else on the platform, had been in this situation before. My train was the next one so I didn’t see the aftermath of what happened but the CMs were still talking about it when our train got into the station. While this father is an every bad word in the dictionary, the CMs clearly have had no training on these situations.

Space Mountain Disneyland

Credit: Matt Pasant, Flickr

While many commenters felt terrible for the child, they fought back against the Redditor’s claim that the cast members were not trained on what to do.

Several commenters said that they were cast members and that Disney did, in fact, train them on what to do. User SwiftwindAlacorn said that the cast member most likely called another cast member to help and watch the child.

 …the CMs clearly have had no training on these situations.

You’re judging without knowledge.

We are trained for this. The CM, according to you, was in a safety position, so as you said could not babysit the child.

One of two things happened:

  1. The CM continued to keep an eye on the child, waiting for the car to come back and the parent retrieve the child, or
  2. The CM called someone to come and care for the child.

When we find a lost child, we are training to wait with the child for a certain amount of time at that location in the hope that the parent will come back and find them. After that, we will take them to Lost Children.

The parent was certainly neglectful.

Disney Cast Members

Credit: Disney

Another commenter said they had seen something similar happened, and believed that security had probably been called. They said security would deal with the neglectful parent and speak to them about their unacceptable actions.

My guess based off seeing this happen on other rides, is another CM called security or their lead to come deal with the kid, then the parents got escorted out of the area to be talked to about it. Depending on the reaction they either continued on their day or they got escorted out.

I saw the aftermath of when someone left their newborn in a stroller in front of Dumbo so they could do the rest of fantasyland. Security was waiting on them with the stroller. When family finally got back were then advised you can’t leave a baby while you go on rides and someone that is not also a small child must wait with baby or baby must go on the ride. That is when the dad freaking lost it and said that its a baby and it wont move why should baby ruin things. Security had enough and it was obvious family was about to get kicked out because of dad. This was in 2019.

Space Mountain Disneyland

Credit: Gregg L. Cooper, Flickr

Related: Parents Abandon Child in Disney Park, Resulting in Cast Member Warning

If you would like to ride an attraction and one of the members of your party is too small to ride, please approach a cast member at the entrance to the ride and ask them about Rider Switch. Your group will be divided into two parties, with the first party riding and the second party waiting. Then, when the first party is done riding, the second party can ride without waiting in line again.

Have you ever seen a parent leave their child with a cast member without asking? Let us know in the comments!

About Krysten Swensen

A born and bred New England girl living the Disney life in Southern California. I love to read, to watch The Golden Girls, and love everything to do with Disney and Universal. I also love to share daily doses of Disney on my Disney Instagram @BrazzleDazzleDisney!

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