State Assembly passes bill requiring inspections of cave attractions

BUFFALO, N.Y. (WIVB) — The New York State Assembly has passed a bill that will require an annual inspection of vessels operated on underground cave waterway attractions, it was announced Tuesday.

The bipartisan bill, which was sponsored by Lockport assemblyman Mike Norris, comes just under one year after the capsizing of a boat at Lockport Cave that left one person dead and 11 others injured. State Senator Rob Ortt also worked on the bill.

Shortly after the incident, a city inspection found electrical issues within the attraction, which included exposed electrical wiring underwater. News 4 WIVB received documents from the city in June 2023 that did not include any code violations or inspections reports at the underground boat ride off of Gooding Street in Lockport, but it was unclear who had oversight of the attraction in order to ensure that it was safe.

Legal action planned as answers sought on Lockport Cave safety

The bill will make it the responsibility of the Office of Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation to inspect the attractions once a year.

“When it was reviewed, there was confusion to actually which authority would have proper oversight over such rides in the state of New York,” Norris said in a legislative session on Tuesday. “I think this is a very good thing for our businesses going forward as well as for our patrons who are going to partake on these rides.”

Lockport Cave was closed for over two months following the incident and opened back up last August for walking tours. No criminal charges were filed in the incident.

The bill previously was passed in the State Senate on Monday, and will now head to Governor Kathy Hochul’s desk to be signed into law.

Latest Local News

State passes bill requiring inspections of cave attractions

Man sentenced for possessing 200,000 images of child porn

Diocese of Buffalo puts St. Jude Center up for sale

Tonawanda man sentenced for stabbing victim outside tavern

Buffalo man indicted for shots fired incident at memorial

Aidan Joly joined the News 4 staff in 2022. He is a graduate of Canisius College. You can see more of his work here.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *