Posted Tuesday, April 19, 2005 9:08 AM | Contributed by Jeff
A wheelchair-bound man died Monday after falling from a sky-diving ride at an indoor amusement park in Tokyo's Daiba waterfront area, police said. The six-seat ride plunges about 12 meters to just above ground level toward a projected image of the sky while wind gushes in from below.
Read more from Japan Times.
All I can say is wow!
If it were up to people we wouldn't have ops to begin with. I agree that people should be smart enough to know when they can't fit, but it is the ride operations to make the final call.
--Dave Althoff, Jr.
Who has been ranting about this one in another forum...
Imagine walking into a dark room with a huge projection screen (like Soarin' at DCA only with six seats instead of many). I remember the restraints being secure, but there was a little uneasiness once the ride starts moving. It brings you to the top in the dark, and then the ride starts. Overall it's kind of a silly concept since you have to go UP every few seconds (who's ever gone up while skydiving?;)).
Either way, this accident's definitely tragic, it's bad enough when someone is injured in a ride accident, and even worse when someone dies in a ride accident.*** This post was edited by RideSafety 4/20/2005 2:35:37 AM ***
That whole thing about "They got approval" is just asinine (I don't doubt its veracity, but the approval should never have been given). This was probably done so as to not upset the guest and now they've done worse. The guy should have been denied riding, but instead the management took the route of least resistance.
I can't even think of anything good that could come out of this. No changes need to be made to the ride, its not an unsafe design it was just plain old stupidity that caused this (and Darwin's got the only cure for that).
(Again, my comments are directed at the ride ops/management, not at the rider. I'm truly sorry for his family's loss, especially with something so easily preventable.)
In my opinion, it is EXACTLY Drop Zone revisited, except that (again, according to news reports) this thing tilts forward about 60 degrees and Drop Zone does not. Still, it is once again a functionally inappropriate restraint used on the ride. Sega corrected the problem on their ride by installing a seat belt, but in this case the seat belt was not used, and the deficiencies of the shoulder bar became tragically obvious.
Of course, that is only an opinion, because *I* think that's what happened on Drop Zone. Someone who knows a lot more about that incident than I do, however, will argue that the locking system on the shoulder bar failed. Remember that there was never an official finding as to the cause of the Drop Zone incident.
--Dave Althoff, Jr.
I seem to recall that Drop Zone, up until the incident, had a small bump in the seat, but was essentially a flat seat design that used an OTSR to secure the rider. Wasn't the corrective action to install supplemental seatbelts that locked into the OTSR that effectively served as an in front of the rider/between the legs barrier?
Essentially, I'm referring to the seat design as an integral part of the restraint system. "Failure" of the primary restraint could be an actual locking mechanism failure, or it could be an inadequate position to secure the rider even if the restraint is locked.
Frog hoppers, for example, usually use a large tandem lapbar instead of an OTSR and they have a seat horns for each rider seat. But the Moser version of a frog hopper (I believe they call it Spring Ride), uses individual OTSRs as a restraints, but still has a seat horn for each rider seat. The S&S drop rides (for example, Double Shots are like extreme frog hoppers) use individual OTSRs, plus each seat has a seat horn, plus each seat also has the seatbelt the locks into the OTSR as a double backup.
On ANY ride, I think the seat design...indeed, the seat design, the car design, the floor of the car if it has one, the fact that it doesn't if it doesn't, and in fact everything that interacts with the rider is an integral part of the restraint system. That's why it's called a system!
Have a look at a photo of an Intamin drop ride: (Drop Tower photo). The guy on the end probably couldn't ride that ride today, as it now has a safety belt that requires the shoulder bar to be down further than that to fasten. Which is interesting, as the presence of the safety belt, regardless of its length, is enough to correct the problem with the seat design.
Heck, if that were a Frog Hopper type seat, they could dispense with the shoulder bar entirely and wouldn't have to worry about losing anyone. THAT would be a scary ride!
--Dave Althoff, Jr.
it sounds that what is needed more rides:
rides that come in 100 Lb. increments
1ST GROUP 200 - 300 POUNDS per person
2nd 300 - 400
3rd 400 - 500
Is there any way to mix seating in the same row?
thought 1: Have large base position for seats and have crane install custom seats.
Thought 2: Build side by side MIXED sized seats on same row.
for ROLLER COASTERS use spur / side tracks to assemble seating in standard base car.
for other rides assemble seating AND SLIDE ONTO BASE ARM.
FOR BOTH USE SCREENED AREA FOR PRIVACY