Girl seriously injured from free fall at Extreme World in the Dells

Posted Saturday, July 31, 2010 12:37 AM | Contributed by Kick The Sky

A 12-year-old girl was injured Friday when safety nets for a thrill ride at Extreme World failed to completely break her 40-foot free-fall and she struck the ground. Lake Delton Police Chief Thomas Dorner said the victim lives out of state. He said a preliminary investigation determined that the girl was released during her free fall, but that the net mechanism that was supposed to catch her and break her fall was not high enough above the ground.

Read more from The Journal Sentinel.

Saturday, July 31, 2010 12:57 AM

This is why I don't ride SCAD towers...

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Saturday, July 31, 2010 2:04 AM

Took the words from my mouth there...

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Saturday, July 31, 2010 4:07 AM

Didn't a similar incident occurr at one of the IAPPA trade shows (just after the SCAD tower premiered)?

-Nate

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Saturday, July 31, 2010 4:30 AM

Yikes, hope she's ok. Are the net heights on SCAD towers variable or something/is there at least a weight limit? Barring a mechanical failure, this should never happen...

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Saturday, July 31, 2010 8:22 AM

When we visited the Dells a few years ago, We stayed at the campground adjacent and behind EW. I walked down the entry lane to watch people doing the things, the only one I hadn't seen before was the SCAD and I watched a few people do it.

Im not exactly sure if the net and tension are setup for a max weight or if its adjusted to each rider. All I can say is I seen a couple come within a foot or two of smacking the ground while most others were ten foot or more in the clear.

There is also the issue that nets and cables both stretch some. However if someone were able to lie about their weight, on this ride it could prove disastrous (Not saying any of this was the cause of what happened)

Its a ride that soley based on the IF factor.I don't think Id try and if I was a park owner, Probably wouldn't have. Its not like they are popping up all over the place as they've been available for awhile (Or at least were)

Still, Im sure its a rush and I bet thousands have enjoyed it safely.
Have to wait for results of investigation. I hope the injuries aren't severe..

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Saturday, July 31, 2010 10:14 AM

The IAAPA incident was in 2002, but they had premiered a year or two (or more) prior to that. It was a 40 foot temporary tower with an air mattress under the net. The net was not in place when a 13 year old kid was released. Needless to say the air mattress was not enough to break the fall and the victim suffered multiple bone breaks. To everyone's surprise the tower reopened a day or two later.

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Saturday, July 31, 2010 1:52 PM

From what I understood, the IAAPA one happened *primarily* because the short height led those in charge to believe the operator would be able to visually check and make sure the net was in place. Reports indicate that the full-sclae SCAD towers use a sensor/light system so the light indicates to the operator when it's safe to drop the rider.

Rode the IAAPA version a day or two prior to the accident, and returned to the trade show a day or two later only to find the ride "unexpectedly closed". When I got home, I found out WHY it had been closed. :(

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Saturday, July 31, 2010 2:16 PM

This is really scary - I wanted to ride one of these in the future. I still do :)

But as I've put on some weight over the past couple years, I wouldn't trust my own guess-timate as to what I weigh. Don't they have a scale there?

The whole area seems to really lack a concern for guests service, and I guess safety as well. My opinion mostly comes from Mt. Olympus, with its oblivious, angry, uncaring ride operators and foot-twisting street curbs built in park. Strange.

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Saturday, July 31, 2010 2:37 PM

CoasterDemon said:
This is really scary - I wanted to ride one of these in the future. I still do :)

But as I've put on some weight over the past couple years, I wouldn't trust my own guess-timate as to what I weigh. Don't they have a scale there?

The whole area seems to really lack a concern for guests service, and I guess safety as well. My opinion mostly comes from Mt. Olympus, with its oblivious, angry, uncaring ride operators and foot-twisting street curbs built in park. Strange.

There real nice if you speak Bulgarian :) They still left the Q line open, let us go up and sit in the train, operator looked at her watch. Said rides closed and made everyone leave. Hades 2007

Last edited by Charles Nungester, Saturday, July 31, 2010 2:38 PM
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Saturday, July 31, 2010 2:43 PM

^That's borderine "we're gonna sit here, go ahead and call security" behavior.

It's such a shame, too. That park has 4 OUTSTANDING (ok, well 3 great and one outstanding - Cyclops - ) woodies. It has so much real kick butt potential. But the operations are the worst I have ever seen. Junkies with no teeth (bless them) have more compassion at some carnivals I've been to.

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Saturday, July 31, 2010 2:45 PM

We had fun at Mt. O. Yeah they seemed like they were going thru the motions but I also had people working there being extremely nice. You can have fun there. Id go back


Now back on topic

Last edited by Charles Nungester, Saturday, July 31, 2010 2:46 PM
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Saturday, July 31, 2010 4:32 PM

A couple of related links that I found concerning Extreme World that I'll share.

If you check out Extreme World's website, it appears that the park is now closed: http://www.extremeworld.com/

Here's another link stating that Extreme World is in foreclosure:
http://host.madison.com/wsj/news/local/article_b49163a6-9cc8-11df-a...03286.html

It appears that the foreclosure action was going on well before the accident this week.

These sorts of accidents are always disturbing. We're all adrenaline junkies and like the rush of pushing limits. This reinforces that serious accidents can occur. We went to Wisconsin Dells last summer and considered going to Extreme World but decided not to. What if??

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Saturday, July 31, 2010 7:30 PM

The girl is in critical condition

text removed... please don't quote an entire article, a link is fine. -J

http://www.startribune.com/local/99696689.html?elr=KArks:DCiUHc3E7_...anchO7DiUr

Last edited by Jeff, Saturday, July 31, 2010 10:00 PM
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Sunday, August 1, 2010 1:49 AM

^^ Them being in foreclosure meant that they were probably cutting corners on maintenance of these attractions. These guys weren't paying property taxes or, well, pretty much any of their bills. The bad news is this family won't be able to go after anyone for damages. However, if it could be proven that the park slacked on maintenance, could there be possible criminal charges?

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Sunday, August 1, 2010 1:50 AM

2 million plus owed creditors, 35g owed taxes.
Whats the bet they didn't have any insurance at all?
Somebodys running for the border about now.

Sad to hear about the girl and her family. I hope she pulls through and somehow is able to resume a normal life.

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Sunday, August 1, 2010 1:57 AM

I was thinking about the accident today, and how much I have wanted to ride one of these. Can't another 'catch net' be put below the regular catch net? Of course, the height would have to be raised, but this way there would be a back up.

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Sunday, August 1, 2010 3:07 AM

SCAD uses a system of multiple nets. The problem is that in order to recover the vict..er...rider, the nets have to be lowered to the ground so that the person can stand up and walk away. Then the nets are raised back up again for the next catch.

That has always been my biggest complaint about the design of this otherwise "completely safe" attraction, and oddly enough, has been involved with all three of the incidents I am aware of.

(For details on the two earlier incidents, go to rideaccidents.com and search for "SCAD". I know Jared is aware of this incident, so it might already be posted there as well.)

--Dave Althoff, Jr.

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Sunday, August 1, 2010 8:35 AM

There's not one little bit of me that would like to 'ride' a SCAD tower. There's just no appeal whatsoever.

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Sunday, August 1, 2010 11:23 AM

A "clever" fix for this problem with this "ride" would be to roll up a stairway, like at an airport, up to the net to allow the "rider" to disembark from the net. That sounds a lot safer to me than to potentially have the net be too low to the ground while someone is falling onto it.

Or have the floor under the net raise into place when the "ride" is over. This floor could be made to easily break away if their was a high impact, such as this, so that if it was accidentally left up, and a "rider" fell onto it, it wouldn't be life-threatening.

...Don't mind me. I'm just brainstorming.

I really hope the little girl and her family comes out of this better than they went into it.

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