Smiler rollercoaster that seriously injured two South Yorkshire teens reopens at Alton Towers

The Alton Towers theme park is reopening its Smiler rollercoaster today - nine months after an accident which left five people, including two South Yorkshire teens, with life changing injuries.
The Alton Towers theme park is reopening its Smiler rollercoaster today - nine months after an accident which left five people, including two South Yorkshire teens, with life changing injuries.

The Alton Towers theme park is reopening its Smiler rollercoaster today - nine months after an accident which left five people, including two South Yorkshire teens, with life changing injuries.

The Staffordshire theme park said in a statement that it had sought to "learn every possible lesson" from last June's crash before deciding to recommence operation of the £18 million ride.

Leah Washington, aged 18, from Barnsley, was in the front row of the Smiler ride at Alton Towers in June when it crashed into an empty carriage, leaving her with injuries that meant medics were forced to amputate her left leg.

Her boyfriend Joe Pugh, from Barnsley, was also left with life-changing injuries after he shattered both kneecaps in the horrific crash.

Three other people were also seriously injured in the crash, which Merlin Entertainments said had been caused by 'human error'.