Black-out Prevention?

Wednesday, March 5, 2003 7:24 PM
My appologies for not being able to use the search correctly, but a while back there was a thread about browning-out that I haven't been able to find. Several people had ideas on how to prevent it, and I'd really like to hear them.

Last summer on about our 4th lap on Alpie, I looked over at my 14 year old daughter, right as we came out of the cobra role. Her eyes rolled back and then her head fell over on her shoulder. She didn't really come around until the corkscrew banged her head into the restraint. This was the middle of the afternoon and she may have been dehydrated, but she says she gets tunnel vision every time she's riden anything substantial.

Anybody got any suggestions?

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Wednesday, March 5, 2003 8:25 PM
I hope to GOD you mean "Black out." Brown out is the term fighter pilots use when they pull a lot of G's and they um...add some brown to the inside of their pants.

Blackout is when, while pulling high G forces, there is a lack of blood (an oxygen) to the brain.

Redout is the opposite, blood flows toward the brain and one sees red.

Prevention? Tell her to clench all the muscles in her lower body during the ride. This may keep enough blood in her upper body to maintain conciousness and clear vision.

-Seth

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Wednesday, March 5, 2003 8:34 PM
I ALWAYS blacked-out on shockwave at SFGAM, anyone else?

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If you haven't rode Raging Bull in the back row you haven't lived. The feeling on that first drop cannot be explained in words!

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Wednesday, March 5, 2003 8:45 PM
I have experienced brown-out (While I have heard the fighter pilots meaning I have heard brown-out used more often for a partial black-out, ie loss of pherferial [sic] vision or just the loss of vision but not consciousness) three times in my life: Shockwave (shoe string loop), on my 7th ride in a row on Kumba (bottom of diving loop) and on Mamba this summer (weird weather I swear there was at least a 10 degree difference between the top of the lift and the bottom when I hit the thermal layer is when it happened). Alpie has given me a "twinge" of it (maybe .5 sec) on a few occasions on the cobra roll. As long as they dont last that long blackouts have no long term effects, according to my dad a doctor and fellow coaster fanatic.

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I don't care what anyone says, Magnum is better then Millenium Force.

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Wednesday, March 5, 2003 9:15 PM
Thats grey out not brown out. A brown out is the afformentioned problem or a loss of electricity.

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Da Poodle

Coming in 2003-The Spawn Of Magnum!

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Thursday, March 6, 2003 2:28 AM
Slurk, she may have just been dehydrated like you said...

I know from personal experiences that when dehydrated on a coaster the g's have a much larger effect on you. It's happen numerous times to me Sonny's loop, which pulls incredible g's in the back. The only thing I do now to prevent that is, well, drink lots of water. Another issue I used to have is not wearing any eye protection like sunglasses or a hat. Because I was looking into the sun all day I'd get sever headaches, and well that just adds to the effect of dehydration.

Basically, the best day at the park is the one that's most well thought out and healthy.

-Charlie Weingartner

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You cannot teach a man anything, you can only help him find it within himself.
-Galileo

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Thursday, March 6, 2003 3:27 AM
As said before, she was more than likly dehydrated. This same thing happened to we when I rode the Hulk last spring. I only ever remember the launch and then what is after the MCBR. The stuff in the middle I don't remember. I rode hulk on the last day of an insanely busy vacation (I was doing somthing from 7AM-1AM) in very hot weather, where because I was dehydrated and refused to accept it, I also ate what is around one meal a day.
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Thursday, March 6, 2003 4:50 AM
I agree with Charlie and Mark about the dehydrated theory. The couple times I had a brown/gray out is on days that I did not keep myself hydrated.
Not sure if it is true or not but heard that caffeine actuals dehydrats you. You can run around a park drinking lots of soda and still not be fully hydrated.
Might be interesting to have her go to a park and drink lots of water and see if she notices a difference and report the findings back to CB.

Jim Wolgamuth
OW op

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Thursday, March 6, 2003 5:26 AM
I agree too. I have experienced that a few times on really hot days where I haven't had enough water. Anaconda at PKD and Two-Face on 100 degree+ days :(

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- "I used to be in the audio/visual club, but I was kicked out because of my views on Vietnam........and I was stealing projectors" - Homer Simpson

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Thursday, March 6, 2003 6:49 AM
I grey-out every single time I ride Vortex when I go into the first loop. Used to happen on King Cobra's loop, too.

I guess since the only time I drink water is when I brush my teeth, that'll happen. ;)

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A day is a drop of water in the ocean of eternity. A week is seven drops.

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Thursday, March 6, 2003 6:54 AM
Eating and drinking are important not only to prevent greying out, but also for your safety just walking around the park. Heat exhaustion is the number one serious physical condition that parks are faced with. It's far more likely to get you than a ride accident.

You can also prevent greying out by tensing your leg and abdominal muscles and grunting. This is a trick that fighter pilots use.

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Thursday, March 6, 2003 7:06 AM
Tensing your leg and abdominal muscles and grunting? Wouldn't that *cause* a "brown-out"? ;)

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A day is a drop of water in the ocean of eternity. A week is seven drops.

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Thursday, March 6, 2003 7:10 AM
I've been on over 80 coasters (including the demonic Shockwave) and I have never EVER blacked-out on a ride... EVER.

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There is no mercy for those who ride X.

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Thursday, March 6, 2003 7:45 AM
I first started experiencing gray-outs 3 years ago, after I lost quite a bit of weight and moved to Illinois, making SFGAM my home park. I thought it was strange that LOSING weight seemed to be related to it starting, since losing 100 pounds makes you 300 pounds lighter when pulling 3 G's. Perhaps it was incidental to that. Anyway, It first happened on Shockwave (SFGAM) when I forgot to yell, and it totally freaked me out. I've found yelling definitely reduces the symptoms, as you tend to tense up in the stomach when yelling.
Since then, though, it seems like it happens more each year. Sigh.

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Pun is the death of wit.

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Thursday, March 6, 2003 7:45 AM
I had no idea dehydration played such a major part in this. Come to think of it though, I'm generally marginally dehydrated after a day at SFMM, and that would explain why I almost always grey out on the first raven turn on X. I swear, that thing is far more powerful than the helix on Goliath.

That being said, clenching the muscles in your legs DEFINITELY helps.

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Thursday, March 6, 2003 8:05 AM
In my own personal experience, I have found that on high positive g rides (like the end of Titan at SFOT), that if my hands are down I can get tunnel-vision (the beginnings of blacking out) pretty easily.

But when I keep my hands up, I don't feel any problems at all. My theory has always been that with my arms above my head that gives the brain an extra little supply of blood as it drains out of your arms. Obviously I'm no doctor, and I'm not even sure if that is a sound theory, but it always seemed to make sense to me.

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Thursday, March 6, 2003 8:16 AM
Another thing that I've found can help is, going up the lift, take longer, deeper breaths, and then going into the high-g section where black-outs are likely, take a few short, rapid, breaths.

I have no idea if this is physiologically correct, but it works for me.

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Be polite and ignore the idiots. - rollergator
"faster, cheaper, and more often" that's somebody's new sig -UpsideDawnGrrrl
My shirt in my photo seems to be for "Aging Bull"

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