How do Australian ride ops...?

Monday, September 11, 2000 1:28 PM
I thought up of an funny but interesting question at school today. We were talking about how doing things in different countries can be offensive. The point of using the thumbs up was also brought, and doing this as offensive as using two fingers over in this country.

Now, onto the question:

How do Australian ride ops confirm that they are ready to go since they can't give the "thumbs up".
Monday, September 11, 2000 5:28 PM
I am in Autstrala and they just wave.

SP we hardly knew Ye
Tuesday, September 12, 2000 1:10 PM

Name two well-known US parks that DO NOT use the 'thumbs up' GO signal.

There are probably more, but I am thinking of two in particular. Hint: They're both in Pennsylvania.

--Dave Althoff, Jr.
Tuesday, September 12, 2000 1:23 PM
How about SFMM. They use the the open palm extended. This surprised me since it isn't the Six Flags standard.

Tuesday, September 12, 2000 2:11 PM
Is one of them Kennywood?
Tuesday, September 12, 2000 3:07 PM
the Four!"
Tuesday, September 12, 2000 3:32 PM
I'd say Hershey Park and Kennywood, why would Dorney use something diffrent then Cedar Point, (both being CF) but ya never know...

What's life if you never get to the Point?
Tuesday, September 12, 2000 6:56 PM
Personlly, I've always thought that the "thumbs up" signal had too much potential for errors, especially at night with the 30,000 plus lights that are on some of the spectaculars glaring in the ops eyes.
Tuesday, September 12, 2000 7:43 PM
Williams Grove doesn't use any siginals since the Cyclone only has one person to check restraints and dispatch.
I'd say the other is Knoebels they are supposed to give the ok sign not thumbs up.
Tuesday, September 12, 2000 7:57 PM

I know that Hershey does not use the "thumbs up". If you ever look at the white signs at the ends, they have the "A OK" sign on them as the proper signal.
Six Flags America IS a Six Flags park!
Wednesday, September 13, 2000 9:35 AM
I went to Valleyfair a couple of weeks ago and the ops didn't even check the restraints before giving the "thumbs up". A couple of the rides have recorded messages that tell you to check your restraints to make sure they're secure. But if you're in the front car or two, you don't hear the message because it starts to play as the train is pulling out of the station.

For those airtime lovers, you could put the restraint pretty much wherever you wanted and the ops wouldn't even notice.
Wednesday, September 13, 2000 9:38 AM
Well, the ones I was thinking of in particular were Hersheypark and Dorney Park. Hersheypark, as noted, uses a "thumb-and-forefinger together, other three fingers extended" signal (OK). Dorney is the odd one as they use what appears to be a referee's "time-out" signal.

I've noticed an evolution in hand signals in recent years. Traditionally, the most common ones I have seen have been:

Thumb up: OK
Crossed arms: STOP!!!
One wrist grabbed in the other hand: Hold
Thumb sideways, shaking: Open/Close lap bars
Pointing across track: Cross track

Lately I have seen a disturbing number of crews using the traditional STOP!!! signal to mean "Cross track" to the extent that when I issued a STOP!!! signal recently it was completely ignored. Some crews are using a "thumbs down" signal for STOP!!! but I personally don't like that because it isn't at all obvious. And it's really difficult for a passenger in distress to issue a thumb-signal when there is something wrong!

--Dave Althoff, Jr.
Wednesday, September 13, 2000 4:02 PM
RideMan,maybe what we need is a standardized set of hand signals,like what the railroads used to use before the advent of two-way radios. It's something that IAAPA could initiate.
Wednesday, September 13, 2000 4:58 PM
Rideman: please dont take immediate offense to this (delayed offense is okay =]) but if you werent working on the ride (or at least an employee at the park) why WOULD they pay attention to your hand signal? They would have no idea that you were educated in their signals. Most of the people that they serve have no clue about such things. I'll admitt that until this year, when I started going to parks alone, I had never paid it much attention. There should be no expectation that the attendants would know that you know some (all) of their signals. I think that they would be more prepared to receive the traditional screams of "STOP" from partrons if something was wrong rather that some sort of hand signal.
Wednesday, September 13, 2000 5:52 PM
Can't forget about hold you hands over your head and yell ROTATE!
Wednesday, September 13, 2000 6:34 PM
Correct me if I'm wrong, but at SFOG they just raise their hand.

SP we hardly knew Ye
Thursday, September 14, 2000 7:37 AM
2Hostyl: It's real hard to offend me. :)
Actually, the reason for issuing a hand signal instead of a yell is for the same reason that the crews use hand signals (and window knocks if you're at Cedar Point): platforms are noisy.

Of course there was the time when I was being careless and got caught in a queue gate at a park (did you know that those things often don't have clutches?!) and I was bellowing about it and didn't get a response, so I think it's more that crew members are so conditioned to react to each other that they don't react to anybody else regardless of the method of signalling.

Suffice to say that ride crews have on occasion responded to my signals...usually much to my surprise. :)

Although what I saw at CP last Sunday on the Magnum platform kind of negates that last statement. They were on top of that problem in a heartbeat and there were no signals involved...

(A kid was running across the exit platform towards a moving train)

--Dave Althoff, Jr.

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