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Dreamworld Tragedy Inquest Set To Start

The long-awaited inquest into the deaths of four people at Gold Coast theme park Dreamworld is set to begin.

Cindy Low, Kate Goodchild, her brother Luke Dorsett and his partner Roozi Araghi lost their lives on the Thunder River Rapids Ride in October 2016.

The four ride passengers were killed instantly from compressive and crushing injuries when they were caught in a malfunctioning mechanism on what was billed as a tame family friendly attraction.

Ms Goodchild's 12-year-old daughter and Ms Low's 10-year-old son were on the raft that flipped at the end of the ride, but survived.

Since then the families have sought answers and relatives of Ms Low have said how they hoped the probe would prevent others from suffering "such enormous heartbreak".

Dreamworld suffered steep falls in visitor numbers following the fatal accident and the park's subsequent 45-day shutdown.

Before Monday's inquest several hearings were held and attended by lawyers for the four victims, Dreamworld chief executive Craig Davidson, Dreamworld's parent company Ardent Leisure and the Office of Industrial Relations.

At a conference in April at the Brisbane Coroners Court it was suggested the inquest be held in two parts.

Coroner James McDougall last month ordered the list of witnesses needed to attend the inquest be finalised by June 1.

Final evidence submissions were to be made by June 8.

The inquest is listed to open at Southport Courthouse on Monday morning.


WHAT: A coronial inquest into the deaths of four people at Dreamworld in October 2016 will start on Monday. The circumstances that led up to and caused the incident on the Thunder River Rapids will be examined, as will the construction, maintenance, safety measures, staffing, history and modifications of the ride. The coroner will also look at the sufficiency of the training provided to staff in operating the family-friendly ride and how to prevent a similar incident from occurring. 

WHY: Cindy Low, Kate Goodchild, her brother Luke Dorsett and his partner Roozi Araghi were killed when the Thunder River Rapids malfunctioned on October 25.

WHERE: The inquest will be held at the Southport Magistrates Court. It is expected to be held in two parts, with the opening period scheduled to run from June 18 to 29.


* October 25 - The Thunder River Rapids Ride malfunctions and causes the deaths of Ms Low, Ms Goodchild, Mr Dorsett and Mr Araghi.

* October 26 - Dreamworld announce plans to reopen on October 28. The reopening is later cancelled following advice from police to scrap the plans.

* October 27 - Parent company Ardent Leisure hold its AGM in Sydney. Then CEO Deborah Thomas comes under fire for not speaking directly to the victims' families.

* November 3 - New Zealand-expat Cindy Low's funeral is held on the NSW Central Coast.

* November 5 - Roozi Araghi's funeral is held in Sydney.

* November 7 - Kate Goodchild and Luke Dorsett are farewelled at a funeral in Canberra.

* November 9 - Dreamworld announces it will demolish the Thunder River Rapids Ride.

* November 25 - Workplace Health and Safety auditors issue seven improvement notices and three prohibition notices following inspection of Dreamworld and WhiteWater World.

* December 10 - WhiteWater World fully reopens and Dreamworld partially reopens, with many of the big rides undergoing safety reviews. 2017

* January 6 - Ardent Leisure announces revenues have plummeted by 63 per cent across Dreamworld and WhiteWater World.

* April 26 - Deborah Thomas announces she is standing down as Ardent Leisure CEO. She later leaves the business with a $731,000 payout.

* June 30 - Ardent Leisure report $62.6 million loss for the financial year. Crowds at Dreamworld estimated to have dropped by as much as 30 per cent.

* September 28 - A Workplace Health and Safety investigation is completed. Industrial Relations Minister Grace Grace says charges against Dreamworld are possible.

* October 13 - Police conclude its report into the incident and deliver a two-volume brief to the coroner.


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