While new cutting edge rides push the envelope for thrilling guests, new rides that do extreme things can be maintenance nightmares for the park operators. Recent examples include Six Flags Magic Mountain's X, Cedar Point's Top Thrill Dragster and Paramount's Kings Dominion's Hypersonic XLC.
Read more from AP via The News-Messenger (Fremont, OH).
"This is no social crisis. This is you having fun." --The Who, Another Tricky Day.
Parks like Cedar Point should realize that customers appreciate the gambles they are taking with these cutting edge rides, understand that unforseen problems may occur and will tolerate some dissapointment if all parties are seen to collaborate in getting the rides up and running reliably. Lets face it, we all like to have a grumble, but what coaster enthusiast worth their salt can honestly say that they won't be in-line for a go on TTD when the problems are ironed out. Exactly!
What is sad is when the legal wrangling between the ride designers and the park owners reaches the point where it seems as if the effort is being directed towards 'passing the buck' rather than fixing the ride. I'm thinking of the whole "X" and Six flags vs. Arrow situation here. Such scenarios are no good for the reputation of the ride designers or the parks and will inhibit future thrill ride development, as no one will want to take a chance on implementing new technology for fear of being sued should unforseen problems occur.
I'm not surprised. The biggest issue that park has right now is their "cost control" is starting to interfere little by little with the overall guest experience, and it shows. I hear, for example, that they've wanted to replace the upstops on Gemini with wheels ever since they did it with Magnum, so they don't have to replace the little brass plates on them, as many as a half-dozen every day.
The problem is that these cost cutting measures save them money that they can quantify. It's a lot harder to quantify the cost of bad press, the administration of handling guest service complaints or distribution of exit passes, etc.
People who go to parks are the ones asking for bigger, better, faster, different. Those people should also be more understanding when new technology needs tweaking before it will work consistently and stop all the dissing of park management and ride designers/manufacturers
I'd rather die living than live like I'm dead
I'd also question the wisdom of parks deviating from the specification recommended by the ride designers. Particularly with cutting edge rides.
Does anyone know when KBF opened Xcelerator were there similar problems?
_One_ of the reasons (there were a few) that I cancelled my trip to CP this month was because od TTDs lack of reliability. So, yes, its reliability can affect people plans...
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They built Xcelerator to test out the new technology and make sure it would do what they wanted it to do. People plan their vacations to ride these new rides, only to be disappointed when they get to the park. Don't get me wrong, I still have fun when I visit, but after driving 3 hours each way, I do go home with a little bit of a sour taste in my mouth not being able to get at least one ride in on TTD.
I also think that the park should be more honest with their guests. Monday I was at the park and it was down. We were told that it would be open later in the day. Later in the day, we were told that it "would open tomorrow." Well, it never opened Tuesday either. Don't lie, tell us the truth. If they do not know when it will open, tell us that you don't know. I am sure that there were people that decided to stay an extra night just because they were told that TTD would be operational Tuesday, only to be disappointed. TELL US THE TRUTH! If it's broke, I can accept that and enjoy the rest of the park, but don't lie to me!
Keep your Arms Down, Head back, and Hold On!
CP gives the information they have at hand. I don't believe they are lying to guests when they say they hope to have it open later in the day, or tomorrow. I have YET to hear them give a definite answer, only "hopefully" or "possibly" and one time I heard "we expect".
Again, it irritates the heck out of me when people diss a park (ANY park) or ride designer/manufacturer when a ride with new technology has problems, even if the problems were caused by ignoring recommendations. Would you rather parks stop building rides like these?
I'd rather die living than live like I'm dead
I do think that they owe it to their guests to try a little harder to get this thing ironed out. People travel long distances and spent a heck of a lot of money to ride this thing and it's down more than it's up. I still have fun when I visit the park and will go back, but still leave disappointed not riding the main ride that I came to ride. And I only traveled 160 miles, not thoushands like some do.
I regret to inform you that Cedar Point's newest roller coaster, Top Thrill Dragster will not be operational today, or tomorrow or probably any day that you decide to visit our park. Please accept our apologies.
Guess I will wait for next year. Too bad they couldn't "soft open" the ride to get all the bugs out ie. EPCOT's Mission:SPACE. But such is life with a seasonal theme park.
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Off of Cedar Point for a while, any park goes through the same kind of stress and frustration when they just can't fix something. True that alot of the mess possibly occured from cost cutting, but who can blame them. Let's face it, this ain't exactly a good year for parks, or really a lot of businesses. So initially when they see a chance tho save some money they'll do it. It's not really that easy for a park to simply just toss in a new coaster. This cost can be a nightmare, especially during a bad year. Back to Cedar Point for a second, I'd imagine that TTD is going to cost them alot more than they bargained for, and even if it did work perfectly it'd still cost a bundle for them. So give these guys a little slack. They add these new extreme attractions and undergo alot of frustration in the process. That's a big undertaking for a pay check. I don't know how much sense my endless ramblings really made but oh well.
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