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Busch Gardens Tampa Bay closes river ride after fatal accident in Australia

Busch Gardens Tampa Bay in Florida has decided to close a river rapids ride after four people were killed on a similar water ride at an amusement park in Australia.

According to FOX 13, Busch Gardens officials say the Congo River Rapids ride was shut down Tuesday “out of an abundance of caution” while they work to understand what happened in Australia.

“We have made the decision to close our Congo River Rapids ride while we work with other park operators and ride manufacturers to understand what happened in Australia,” Karen Varga-Sinka, Busch Gardens spokeswoman, said in a statement.

“The safety of guests and team members continues to be Busch Gardens’ number one priority. All ride attractions are inspected daily by trained technicians to ensure they are operating properly and meet all safety guidelines set forth by state agencies and well as the ride manufacturers.”

RELATED: Four riders killed in accident on river rapids ride in Australian theme park

Park officials have confirmed that two men and two women died while on the Thunder River Rapids ride after it malfunctioned at Dreamworld, a popular theme park on Queensland’s Gold Coast.

The Thunder River Rapids ride, which Busch Gardens officials say is similar to the Congo River Rapids ride, whisks riders in circular rafts along a fast-moving, man-made river, with a conveyor belt helping move the rafts through the water.

Busch Gardens is owned by SeaWorld Parks Entertainment.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.