I was just looking at the latest batch of photos on michigans adventures web site ,and there is a picture of the new rafts for the ride. The only problem is that there are no seatbelts or seat dividers.
The ride opens in a week, I assume that if it were going to have belts or dividers they would be installed already.
I just found it weird that they would not have belts or dividers. Is this how they are building them now?
Those are the "new" Intamin 9 seats boats. They're common in Europe, where Tussaud replaced the standard 6 passengers boats on their Alton Towers and Thorpe Park river rapids with those. Reports put them as very uncomfortable!
For some reason I believe I have ridden in them before and didnt find them too unconfertable (I just cant remember where.) I believe the lack of seat belts is a percautionary measure though, after all those drowning due to flip overs, since people are going to be thrown from the raft in the event of a flip (not far just enough to get out from under it) and there really isnt that many g-forces on those things anyways.
I've run an O.D. Hopkins model, and let me tell you, its about time these things were run without seat belts. The only thing they really do is keep people in the their seats, and really, if people are going to be dumb and stand up, they can just unclip the belt do what they want to do anyway.
The lack of seat belts must make load times so much more efficient.
The velcro straps we had on Rip Roaring Rapids were a joke. I don't think they are necessary if they design the ride right. However, if it is a particularly wet ride, I can see someone panicking and standing up. Then again, I saw that happen with the velcro belts.
Anyway, I always thought it would be cool to have the handlebar attached to "fins" on the botton so the passengers could steer. But those fins would get pretty scraped up on all the weirs.
I don't think a fin would really make much of a difference on the vehicle's path. Or at the very least it wouldn't really make the ride more controllable. *** Edited 5/11/2006 3:47:22 PM UTC by matt.***
On another note.... GL has added "velco" seat belts to Grizzly Run this season. So in theory seatbelts are just a matter of a couple things. The park or companies insurance policies. And The states laws that the ride is in. I would think the manufacturer cangive the option for pre-installed seatbelts if the park requests them or they are require by law. Michigan might not require seatbelts on raft rides of this nature.
From personal experience (I was ATL, TL and a Sup for Grizzly Run for 4 consecutive seasons) guests hurt themselves more from standing on the ride to avoid getting wet from waterfalls. (another reason GL has turned theirs off) If a guest rides properly, meaning seating, feet on the floor with both hands holding on to the center ring there is no danger to the guest being tossed from the boat, as it has never happened in my 4 years working the Grizz. However, when a guest stands to avoid the water this is where the injuries come into play. Again, it's as simple as rider responsibility. *** Edited 5/11/2006 9:46:48 PM UTC by XFlight***
crazy horse said: I thought that they HAD to have belts on the ride. Dont all rides have to have belts? What is to stop someone from getting thrown out of the ride?
Don't forget Sky rides, ferris wheels, and trains (with smoke stacks). And then you have the rides where there's a lapbar and no belt, IE scrambler, matterhorn, and swinging ships. I think you got the point now.
Well, when a ride has a penchant for flipping over, seatbelts might be a bad thing in some cases.
I always considered the velcro straps as more of a "reminder" to the guests to not stand up.
While taking an inaugural run, we hit a weir and were thrown from our seats in spite of being securely fastened. Also, in the boat flips I've seen, everyone was able to get out before being squished by the boat.