Experts say thrill rides pose little danger

Posted | Contributed by Jeff

Many medical doctors and researchers dismiss allegations that the physical forces that amusement rides exert are dangerous. Though some rides can go faster than 100 mph, the physical stress they put on the body is not very great -- less in some cases than everyday experiences, such as dropping into a chair.

Read more from The Orlando Sentinel.

Wonder if Markey has seen this? Somehow, I doubt it.
I'm sure he has seen the study the the information behind this article came from, he just doesn't care. The study dates from 2002.

Simple facts. If you drive more than 3 miles to get to the amusement park, you are more likely to be killed on the road than by an amusement ride accident. While you are at the park, you are more likely to die from heat stress or heart attack than from an amusement ride accident.

This doesn't exclude those rare cases of gross negligence such as the Pigeon Forge incident.

I remembered the article from Popular Mechanics a few years ago called "Scared To Death", (written by Paul Ruben...this time though, don't hold it against him!). Here's the link:

Scared To Death

Plus, during the search, I found this group of MD's and other experts called the Blue Ribbon Panel. I've read about half of it, so far, and thought T. Harold Hudson's comments to be the most interesting. He actually has amusement industry experince.

Blue Ribbon Panel*** This post was edited by Floorless Fan 6/20/2005 4:45:30 PM ****** This post was edited by Floorless Fan 6/20/2005 4:46:53 PM ***

Actually that was a decent article by Paul with the gist being.

Riders should be in generally good health and not have yada yada conditions. Which damn near every park ride has posted right in front of it.

Annurisims and blood clots are pre existing conditions which sometimes a coaster might exploit. This is not the park or manufacturers fault.

Sitting on a plane for multiple hours can cause blood clots in the legs.


The article wasn't bad, but at first glance, unless you actually sit and read the article, it looks very negative. Paul Ruben should have known better than to use such a dramatic title and such on the front of the mag. because in the end, it could have done much harm. If it was a magazine decision, then shame on them for not reading the article.
He should have called it Roller coasters: The ride of your life, or Death! Now that would have been creative; although I saw that title in a newspaper before.
If people used common sense and followed posted rules, and used some more common sense, a lot of incidents would be avoided. As for most other issues?? Ride operators are also supposed to be aware and use common sense. They are, after all, a deciding factor in accidents and incidents. I already had a ride stopped at Hersheypark when the attendant failed to close the safety bar on my son and another little girl. It was a kiddie ride, but kiddies don't always sit down nice and hold on. With that neglect, it is no wonder the log flume accident occurred in AC. Didn't the attendant take notice that the pool of water was empty?
I've been on the giant chute ride at Hershey when the operators failed to lower the restraint on one row of the boat resulting in an e-stop. And that's one where you do need the restraint.

Overall though, operator error is the least common cause of fatal accidents. Most common is mechanical failure with rider misconduct not far behind. Operator error accounted for only about 10% of the 30 fatalities in the last 10 years. It is of course difficult to clearly fix the cause in some cases, with multiple or unclear causes.

Jim...Where do you get your stats? I'd love to look at them.
I use a number of sources for my stats Most important are the CPSC reports and is probably more accurate than that CPSC dats. I also use the news reports that are listed here for recent incidents.

Causes of accidents are often not simple. I use the example of the fatality on Joker's Jukebox at SFNO. A non-rider was struck and killed when the ride was started while she was reported checking the restraint on a child. Was is her misconduct for being where she shouldn't have been, operator error for starting the ride, or a design problem that limited the operator's visibility? All 3 were probably contributing factors.

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