Six Flags Over Texas ride op told police of concerns over restraint in fatal accident

Posted Friday, November 8, 2013 8:46 AM | Contributed by Jason Hammond

A Six Flags Over Texas employee told police that he or she thought the safety restraint was “a little high, or not as tight as it should be” on the Dallas woman who fell to her death from the Texas Giant roller coaster in July, according police documents. That employee, whose name was redacted, went to the roller coaster’s control panel to check the safety indicator light, the interview summary said. After determining the lap bar was secure, the train carrying Rosa Esparza was allowed to leave.

Read more from The Dallas Morning News.

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Monday, November 11, 2013 11:39 PM

Bakeman31092 said:

I really doubt that a malfunctioning sensor would lead to a false "good to go" reading. Perhaps a false "no go" reading, but not the other way around.

And your reason for this doubt?

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Tuesday, November 12, 2013 2:54 AM

Jason Hammond said:

Shouldn't the same hold true for the ride operators? If they think something is wrong, regardless of what the computer says, don't let the train go.

It should hold true, but in practice, it probably doesn't. As Andy said, there's generally a lot of pressure to keep those dispatches quick and problem free. If they were to decide to hold the train, then there's downtime, or at least a delay, supervisors get involved, etc.

Making a good judgement call might save someone's life, but making that call and then having it deemed unnecessary by the higher ups will likely cost that operator their job. When the computer says "good to go" I doubt most ride ops are willing to risk their job by challenging it, unless it's something really blatantly obvious.

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Tuesday, November 12, 2013 11:51 AM

If management is going to terminate someone's employment for erring on the side of caution, they are doing it wrong.

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Tuesday, November 12, 2013 1:11 PM

As for the video, the real issue is the person using their cell phone in the first place. The restraints were opened intentionally as Jeff said and with that the only lawsuit I can see has the riders at fault. Now off course the media would never report that.

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Tuesday, November 12, 2013 1:12 PM

J. said:

If management is going to terminate someone's employment for erring on the side of caution, they are doing it wrong.

The fact that you can get sued for erring on the side of caution is where it's going wrong.

kpjb has the reality of the situation so nailed down that there doesn't need to be a single other post on the subject.

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