Can Earthquakes Damage Rollercoasters?

Wednesday, February 28, 2001 12:58 PM
I was wondering since that today 2/28/01 a 6.8 magnitude earthquake at Seattle area. Do you think IF earthquake happened in California Home of DCA,PGA,SFMW,KBF,DisneyLand,Universal Studios, etc. Rollercoasters will be damaged or destroyed? The recent earthquakes in California in 1989 San FRancisco Earthquake and 1995 Los Angeles Earthquake. I hOpe not but please tell me if it will
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Wednesday, February 28, 2001 1:04 PM
Coasters over there are usually built on special foundations that will absorb most. Much like Steel Dragon in Japan.

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May 5th, Gurnee Illinois, "I'm sprinting for V2"
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Wednesday, February 28, 2001 1:17 PM
Yes, earthquakes can damage coasters.
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Wednesday, February 28, 2001 1:47 PM
so have been there any reports of ppopular coasters been broken and fell!?
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Wednesday, February 28, 2001 1:51 PM
If the quake is strong enough, sure they could be damaged. Think about this...would you want to be riding a coaster when a quake hit?
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Wednesday, February 28, 2001 2:04 PM
No, coasters can not really be damaged in the case of a "normal" earthquake. They build them specially in parks like Six Flags Magic Mountain because they consider earthquakes before building their coasters. I'm sure, if the earthquake was big enough, it could damage it some. But if it's just a normal earthquake, you would just feel a little shudder on the lift hill and if your were on the course already when it happened, you wouldn't notice it at all.

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-Glitchey
Indiana Beach 2001 - Pictures, Reviews, CornBall Express exclusive information - coming Spring 2001! *** This post was edited by Glitch01 on 2/28/2001. ***
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Wednesday, February 28, 2001 2:36 PM
A little shudder?? If a coaster was built to flex in an earthquake, you'd feel it quite a bit. If the coaster were operating, the additional friction would probably cause it to valley.

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Decisions determine destiny; Destiny determines decisions.
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Wednesday, February 28, 2001 3:02 PM

An earthquake could damage a coaster, but all coasters are designed to flex a bit, and it would probably take the ground beneath the coaster litterally ripping open to really damage one.
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2001- the year of flight!
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Wednesday, February 28, 2001 3:10 PM
Hey Lancer, I watched a video made back in the 70s, they said California would be broken off by now and WW3 would be going on. Oh well

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Best Coaster: Millennium Force
Worst Coaster: Project Stealth
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Wednesday, February 28, 2001 3:27 PM

Hey Earth quakes are a real threat especially at parks were you would least expect them to occur at . It s a extreme threat with Woodens.
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Golioath Rocks the west but Millinnium Force Rules The Rest
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Wednesday, February 28, 2001 4:19 PM
Anything could be damaged by an earthquake, it just depends how server of an earthquake. If you think about it, a coaster is basicly nothing but a support strucure, so you realy wouldn't have too much to worry about.

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MF Drops-15
SOB Rides-2
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Wednesday, February 28, 2001 5:53 PM
I'm no engineer, but consider how much coasters "give" in the first place. Like high-rise buildings, they're supposed to sway and move a bit. When Mantis comes down after the vertical loop I think about how much the track flexes, or Space Spiral sways in the wind.

In other words, I think most could take a good beating.

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Jeff
Webmaster/Admin - CoasterBuzz.com
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Wednesday, February 28, 2001 5:55 PM
I'm a mechanical not a civil engineer, but I suspect that a steel coaster would would probably have its design limited by wind load rather than earthquake. A woodie would probably be more vulnerable due to more mass located high up. Of course one small design detail done wrong could result in the failure of a coaster in a quake.
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Wednesday, February 28, 2001 6:22 PM
Well....Ninja and Batman were damaged at Magic Mountain when the Northridge quake hit in 94. Batman was still being built at the time. I think the concrete of a footer cracked. Something minor along those lines. The problem was fixed and the ride opened on time. Ninja had a little more damage, but, again, nothing big. The track in one area got a little messed up. The exact area escapes me at the moment. But, I hear that you can tell that it was tweaked. Oh, and get this, it bad the ride better. Go figure.

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-I see stars because I just rode Flashback, can you see them to?
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Wednesday, February 28, 2001 6:48 PM
i know theres some sort of code in CA that wooden coasters have to have more wood. look at ghostrider that things structure is pretty big. i also know that deamon grizzly tidal wave and other rides survived the 89 earthquake in SF.

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are you ready to go vertical?...V2 2001...
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Thursday, March 8, 2001 11:06 AM
The damage from a earthquake is typically limited to the follwoing:

1. Old Construction
2. Ground liquidation
3. Other objects

If it is an old coatser, perhaps some damage woudl occur. Think of an earthquake as a wave in the ocean. Everything (Such as boats) on the ocean rides and falls. The same occurs on land, unless such a ride were directly on a collapsing falt line, or in the case of a weak hillside the gound liquifies.
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Thursday, March 8, 2001 12:30 PM
I think a woodie would be sturdier. They're designed to flex more.

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Decisions determine destiny; Destiny determines decisions.
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Thursday, March 8, 2001 12:51 PM
Hey Metrock, you forgot about Psyclone. Never was the same after the '94 quake. Speaking of earthquakes so-cal is 'bout due for another one.
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Thursday, March 8, 2001 1:15 PM
Well, I guess you'll never see a coaster in Claifornia called 'Earthquake: The Ride.' That's just plain asking for trouble deep underground!

Yeah, when is the 'Big One' gonna happen? Was the last big one in L.A. in '89 or '91?

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Home Park - Wonderland Sydney, Australia, featuring;
1) The Demon - 1988 Vekoma Boomerang
2) The Bush Beast - 1985 KEC Woodie (Clone of PKD's Grizzly)
3) Beastie - 1985 KEC Junior Woodie
4) More steel coasters please!!! Preferably a B&M Masterpiece!
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Thursday, March 8, 2001 2:17 PM
'94, must be hard knowing all the U.S. news living in Australia, CoasterGod, eh?

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"The KKK took my baby away, took her away, away from me!" *** This post was edited by APForce on 3/8/2001. ***
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