PR Handicap Problem

Tuesday, May 22, 2001 7:39 PM
On our local NBC station they ran a story on a local man with a prosethetic leg who was told he could not go on the new ride. The reason gave was that the ride was not tested for people with physical handicaps yet. The man and his wife are considering a lawyer.
Our local media never likes Kennywood anyway. The accident on the t-bolt(I think last year) was the lead story for days on every newscast. They all had stories about PR being late, but barely gave it 8 seconds when it opened. Any opinions?

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Tuesday, May 22, 2001 8:03 PM
My reply is simple, their court case doesn't have a leg to stand on if you'll pardon the very sad late night pun. *g* Kennywood has every right to refuse entry to the ride for any reason they'd like to state as they own the property and patrons are allowed to enter by the permission of the park. While I agree with the guy that it would suck to go to KW and not be able to ride it is *clearly* within their rights to refuse him.

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SRM 2001: No Lights, No Brakes, No Bell???
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Tuesday, May 22, 2001 8:05 PM
Yes, the Media and Lawyers have destroyed just about everything. I'm trying to find a park I can sue due to my diabetes. Any Opinions? Certainly I jest.

I certainly don't know the history behind this story, and I'm quite sure our beloved media has twisted and turned the scenario to meet their needs. I certainly don't know how this ride (I'm assuming Phantom's Revenge) would make things complicated for someone with a prosthetic limb. Certainly an Inverted and/or Floorless might create a potential problem for both rider and patron below.

As far as opinions, "What do you get when you have the general media and 99% of Lawyers buried up to their neck in concrete?" - Not enough concrete!!!

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Tuesday, May 22, 2001 8:32 PM
The Thunderbolt accident happened two years ago. Remember "If it Bleeds it Leads". I doubt the local media hates Kennywood. It's just so much more "exciting" to have an accident in the news. Coasters=danger=bigger ratings. New coaster opening=blah. Ever notice how boring the weather report is until you have a blizzard coming? A beautiful day just isn't as exciting as 2 feet of snow and potential deaths and mayhem.
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Tuesday, May 22, 2001 8:58 PM
Just last night I was going over Holiday World's regulations for severely handicapped persons, my little brother has cerebral palsy, and they stressed that they want every rider to be able to evacuate a ride as quickly and as effortlessly as possible.
He can't walk or hold on himself. He has a chair, so the only thing he can really enjoy is the train at Hershey Park. Their caboose can fit a wheelchair. I wanted to know if H.W.'s was the same. No.

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*** This post was edited by daisybean on 5/23/2001. ***
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Tuesday, May 22, 2001 9:13 PM
I think PA law is like Ohio law where if the park and/or ride op feels the guest can't ride safely, they can't ride.

I think parks have been very accommodating for physical disabilities, but there is some line you just can't cross. Riding coasters is a physically demanding activity. Do you sue if you can't do the rock climbing walls or are too tall to ride the go-karts?

And by the way... don't blame "The Media" for the world's ills. I've been a member of said media my entire professional life and don't like being used as a scapegoat for delivering what the audience wants. Turn back and look at society and culture, "The Media" has to put food on the table.

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Jeff
Webmaster/Admin - CoasterBuzz.com
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Wednesday, May 23, 2001 4:36 AM
Is there really a difference between not letting someone to ride who is too short versus not letting someone to ride who has a prosethetic leg? They have determined that these situations are high-risk and therefore they can't ride.

If they had allowed the man to ride the coaster and he was hurt due to his prosethetic leg we would also have another lawsuit.

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/s/
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Wednesday, May 23, 2001 5:16 AM

Jeff said:
"And by the way... don't blame "The Media" for the world's ills. I've been a member of said media my entire professional life and don't like being used as a scapegoat for delivering what the audience wants. Turn back and look at society and culture, "The Media" has to put food on the table."


But the question becomes: "Did the media simply provide supply for the existing demand, or did the media create the demand with its constant supply?"...kinda like that whole chicken and egg thing...
lata,
jeremy
--who doesnt have the answer to the media question, but belives the chicken came first...
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Wednesday, May 23, 2001 5:36 AM
I saw a girl on Apollo's Charriot last year who rode with a cast, they wouldn't let her on Alpengeist, though. It seems to me they would have to worry about her hurting herself more.
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Wednesday, May 23, 2001 6:24 AM
I know of at least one incident of a prosthetic leg come off a rider on a suspended and hitting people behind him. As I understand,it's still in litigation.
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Wednesday, May 23, 2001 6:57 AM
I found it kind of funny yesterday they let a poor girl who obviously could not walk and had very small brittle legs on Magnum (No, that's not funny). What is odd they gave her the ejector seat.

This Guy has no case. Just like the ride is not tested and approved for a person under 30" tall, it is not tested and approved for people with prostatic legs.
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Wednesday, May 23, 2001 7:09 AM
Okay, here is the scenario...

The park, being careful and cautious, does not let the guy with the artifical leg ride because the ride has not been tested for this situaiton. Results, the guy sues and the park gets some negative press because of their "insensitivity".

On the other hand...

The park lets the guy ride. Something happens to injure (or worse) him and/or other riders. Results, the man (or his surivors) sue, other injured (or their survivors) sue, and the park gets a whole lot of bad publicity because of their negligance.

I think it wise to err on the side of caution and risk a law suit that way.
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"Resistance is futile... you will be assimilated." The BORG's (and Six Flags') motto.
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Wednesday, May 23, 2001 8:01 AM
Under the Americans With Disabilities Act (ADA), public accomadations, such as ammusement parks, are required to make "reasonable accomadations" for the handicapped.

As applies the roller coasters, I would think that you would not be allowd to ride an invert with a prosthetic leg, thought you would probalbly be allowed to leave it in the station and ride, provided that you have enough stump left to allow proper restrain in the seat.

For a sit down coaster it might well depend on the nature of the prosthesis. Some may simply not be able to fit in the car. The excuse that we haven't tested it yet for prosthetic legs sounds a bit lame. How do you test a coaster for use with prostheric legs? Get a hundred people with prosthetic legs and see how many fly out? Remember that each prostehtic leg is a custom design. The correct spproach is probably the same used by most parks with large people. Put them in the car and see if they fit and can be properly restrained.
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Wednesday, May 23, 2001 8:37 AM
Interesting that you bring up the leg on an inverter thing. My wife's first ride on Raptor was delayed the year it opened because a guy lost his leg. I think it's safe to say that if the guy was wearing pants you couldn't tell he had it. Still, can you imagine if he lost it going in or out of a loop? It would most certainly hit someone, especially at the base of the vertical loop.

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Jeff
Webmaster/Admin - CoasterBuzz.com
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Wednesday, May 23, 2001 1:15 PM
years ago the same thing happened to my uncle...He went to the picnic area took off his leg and they let him ride then.
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Wednesday, May 23, 2001 3:08 PM

p_c_r said:
"I saw a girl on Apollo's Charriot last year who rode with a cast, they wouldn't let her on Alpengeist, though. It seems to me they would have to worry about her hurting herself more."


Don't worry. BGW does a great job with injured guests! I had a cast on my leg once and they told us about the nature of the ride, and the restraints. They also gave us free soda and a re-ride!
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┬ęBruce's Posting Co.
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Wednesday, May 23, 2001 5:52 PM

Jeff said:
"I think it's safe to say that if the guy was wearing pants you couldn't tell he had it"


I work with a guy who has a prosthetic leg below the knee. I doubt that any ride operator could spot it with long pants on. Even knowing about it I barely see the difference in his walk. One good thing is modern prosthetic legs are usually carbon fibre and weigh no more than a sneaker. Of course I wouldn't want to be hit by a sneaker doing 50 mph.
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Wednesday, May 23, 2001 6:25 PM
So, are we saying that SFWoA is not a safe park?

I pushed my buddy around SFWoA in a wheel chair on Mother's Day. He had a hard cast on his leg. The Ops allowed us to ride ALL coasters and actually let us do two laps per ride, so that we didn't have to go down the elevator, then back up.

A) Is this safe?
B) Is it that all inverts at SFWoA are over wetlands, so we get to ride them?
C) Or, is it that the cast was secure enough to ride?

I don't know, but it WAS a great day!
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Thursday, May 24, 2001 10:37 AM
Why not just take the D*mn leg off. I mean I can understand if his whole lap is prostestic. But he could slide it off and still ride. anyway the ride is sitdown and enclosed. His leg is not going anywhere. I could understand a inverted standup or the B&M sitdowns where the seats recline like on their hyperes or wildfire.
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Thursday, May 24, 2001 10:46 AM

Jeff said:
"Still, can you imagine if he lost it going in or out of a loop? It would most certainly hit someone, especially at the base of the vertical loop."


Okay, not to be morbid... but...

Picture the above scenario happening just as you are trying to convince a person who is afrait to ride that it is safe.

You just about have them convinced that nothing, absolutely nothing bad is going to happen as you watch the train go through a loop and a leg suddenly goes flying through the air!

(No flames please... I am not being insensitive to handicaped people who have lost limbs or anything... that just popped into my mind as I read Jeff's comments)

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"Resistance is futile... you will be assimilated." The BORG's (and Six Flags') motto.
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