Vacation scare prompts Windsor family to focus on emergency planning

A LaSalle mother is vowing not to vacation without prearranged emergency meetup locations following a terrifying search for her kids after a large duct fell from the roof and crashed into a pool at the Kalahari water resort.

'There were so many people in those pools and it could have been a huge, huge disaster'

A large portion of duct fell into the pool area at a Kalahari water resort in Sandusky, Ohio on Monday. Several Windsor families were at the resort when it happened. (Courtesy Brandon Alliet)

A LaSalle mother is vowing not to vacation without prearranged emergency meetup locations following a terrifying search for her kids after a large duct fell from the roof and crashed into a pool at the Kalahari water resort.

Tasha Hummell was at the water park in Sandusky, Ohio with her husband and two boys when the massive piece of metal tubing collapsed and injured five people. The Erie County Sheriff's Office described the injuries as minor — two people were treated and released from a hospital, while three others refused treatment.

"This morning when I thought back I thought 'Oh my god that could have been much worse,'" she said. "There were so many people in those pools and it could have been a huge, huge disaster." 

Hummell said she heard a loud bang and her husband yelling for her. She spent the frantic moments after the tubing fell searching for her kids among screaming parents and crying children.

A witness calls 911 from the Kalahari waterpark after a duct fell from the ceiling. 0:31

She wasn't sure if her sons had been in the pool when the duct plummeted down and the boys hadn't returned to the family's cabana, which had been designated as their meet-up spot if anything went wrong.

They've closed off the danger part. I don't feel at risk at all.- Tasha Hummell

It turns out the boys, along with many others who had been near the collapse, had been directed to the park.

"Going forward I would have more meeting spots in more areas," she said, explaining a backup location in case her boys couldn't make it to the cabana would have helped her locate them more quickly.

"That was the scary part. Hundreds and hundreds of people are getting sent out there, my kids are out there and I have no idea how I'm going to find them."

Tuesday presented a much calmer, if cramped scene.

Hummell said only about a quarter of the park was open, the rest was blocked off with cloth barriers. The straps that once held the ducts still dangled from the ceiling.

She added the park covered the cost of her family's stay and even offered them an opportunity to enjoy the pools and slides that are open until the end of the day.

"They've closed off the danger part," said Hummell. "I don't feel at risk at all. I think they did a good job doing what they need to do."

Large tarps block off much of the Kalahari water resort after a duct collapsed into a pool Monday, injuring five people. (Tasha Hummell)

With files from the Associated Press