Once while waiting for Iron Dragon, I noticed that a metal part was dangling from a bogie on the train. Because it didn't look normal, I noified the attendant (who had made the handsign for 'clear' already). She immdiately (and frantically, I must add) stopped the train. Right away, the attendants ride closed down the ride and did not open it again for another hour.
My question is, are the people waiting in line expected to inspect the train as it departs? Had I not intervened, would the train have still been safe to run another few laps, or the rest of the day?
Oh, by the way, the part that had come off (and the pin too) was a 180 degree rotated L shape part that connected the car to the bogie.
That's not good. I've always had a slight fear of any inverted track rides before if there's a wheel enclosure problem, you could potentially go flying towards the ground. If it happened on a regular one, you could just screech to a stop.
I know the odds are ub3r small, but it's just one of those bad pictures that comes to mind.
If it was the "L" shaped thing hanging down that was the "OMG stuff broke and now we're saving our people from dying" piece #2. Many, many Very Bad Things (TM) would have to happen for a complete failure of the Arrow inverted.
That doesn't mean it was wrong to shut down... and yes, guests are supposed to inspect the trains. You're licensed in it, right? (Duh.)
Just because something is "broken" does not mean it's catastrphic. Just because they frantically stop does not mean it's been that way for several laps already. They (ride ops) generally don't know what it is, thus they do not want to put their guests in unneeded danger.
Case in point: The one day I was at Dorney, I rode Thunder Canyon (not a coaster, I know). Anywho, I had ridden this ride countless times before. As I was going up the conveyor, I heard a loud clank/crash noise I had never heard before. I decided to ride again and told the ride supervisor about it as I was getting in the boat. As the boat I was in came back to the station, I noticed that they weren't loading people anymore (but still sending empty boats). Turns out that they closed the ride. I don't know why (other than "maintenance adjustments") but I walked by about 20 minutes later to see if it was open again and I saw several maintenance personnel on the conveyor.
I admit it; there are several instances where I've reported strange noises and things that Just Don't Look Right (no obvious falling-off parts, though) to ride operators. At Cedar Point, I'm something like 6:8 of times I've caught things that ultimately resulted in ride downtime while the park is about 3:8 for actually taking action on my comment. Not a bad record for either of us, really. :)
Well if something looks out of place then you should inform the ops & have the ride shut down til the train can either be repaired or removed from service.
Same thing can be said if....for the sake of argument you're queing for a flat ride & during your wait you notice the ride making an odd noise during it's cycle that just doesn't sound right.....now would you get on it knowing there might be a safety problem? you'd inform the attendant/operator that something just doesn't look or sound right is what you'd probably do.
There have been exactly two times when I had reported something to an op. Once was on Disaster Transport where the shuttle was making very odd noises (I had ridden quite a few times that day and the crew new I'd notice a strange sound by that point). They stuck an op in the suspect shuttle to listen for the same noise. They didn't hear it so it must not have been a big deal.
The other instance I don't remember what it was now, but it was at CP. I think it may have been a complaint about the broken axle on Magnum's black train a few years ago...
When I was at Busch Gardens Williamsburg, I saw the ride ops on Big Bad Wolf slap the bottom of each canvas under the wheel mechanism. (See http://rcdb.com/ig111.htm?picture=8.) I've never seen that same action at PCW's Vortex or CP's Iron Dragon.
Does anyone know why that is part of their procedure? Is it to detect parts that may have fallen off?
Wow Dude. PNE man. You deserve a huge pat on the back. That is impressive to me. It is not your job to be inspecting rides for other well paid workers. You are a guest entering the park after paying and are there to thrill yourself with ride indulging and not inspecting. I do believe though that it's good for rides to inspect when there life is riding on a train that does extreme hights, speeds, incersions etc.