SoCal Wipeouts closed following accident at Marine World

Posted Tuesday, May 22, 2001 4:31 AM | Contributed by supermandl

A woman fell out of a Wipeout ride at Six Flags Marine World last weekend. California OSHA is investigating, while Knott's Berry Farm and a carnival have agreed to close their similar rides pending the outcome of the investigation.

Read more from a KPIX report on Yahoo.

Tuesday, May 22, 2001 8:30 AM
This is why rides should have seat belts...
(Who at 16 years of age would be more than willing to pay a $15-$25 dollar subscription in order to keep this site running)
Tuesday, May 22, 2001 8:38 AM
How much do you want to bet the woman popped the bar or it wasn't secure in the first place? I doubt very much that this is a symptom of mechanical failure.

Webmaster/Admin -
Tuesday, May 22, 2001 9:14 AM
Could the women pop the bar? I've never ridden the Chance version of a Trabant so I don't know. Thank God she only fell six feet.
Tuesday, May 22, 2001 12:11 PM
I hope she's ok!? People do stupid things alot. When I worked on the Blue Streak at CP, we had to stop the train on the lift at least 3 times a week after warning someone not to stand up over the lift's loud speakers. Most accidents occur because someone stands up, doesn't put their restraint down, or unlocks it. It usually hurts the industry. Like the girl who killed herself on Timberwolf a few years ago. That ride used to be the tops!

Ow! My lap bar IS down all the way.
Tuesday, May 22, 2001 12:47 PM
I worked on one of these rides. The lapbars are stiff when they are in the closed position. An operator in a hurry could easily think it locked when with a bit more pressure, realize that it is not locked.

I'm not blaming the operator here, just pointing that out.

Also, it is very easy for a guest to open it themselves...Why they would do this though is beyond me.

Mechanical failure is unlikely given the sturdiness of the mechanism.

Decisions determine destiny; Destiny determines decisions.
Tuesday, May 22, 2001 1:15 PM
What is this ride like? I don't know much about flat rides.
Tuesday, May 22, 2001 3:12 PM
The Wipeout has a green indicator light near each car. Once locked, that light will go on and stay on throughout the ride. (unless it burns out) I don't think the rides computer will allow it to start when the green light isn't on.

It's strange that after 11 years on the market, this is the first incident that has occured on a Wipeout. The other thing is, 2 years ago, Marine World had a person fall out of another dependable ride, the Scrambler.

The Wipeout, made by Chance Rides, is the newest version of the ever popular Trabant or Casino. The ride features a circular platform, with cars along the edge that spins in a coin-like motion, dipping and turning.

For a photo, go to:
Tuesday, May 22, 2001 5:18 PM
How can you fall out of a Scrambler?
On the wipeout, Maybe if you lean out as you head toward the bottom you would slip out of the bar and it would toss you?

Rollercoasters are the secret of life!
Tuesday, May 22, 2001 9:50 PM
We're definitely not getting all the details here.A Wipeout will not start unless all the lap bar interlocks are engaged. A bar opening while the ride is in operation will put it into an emergency stop mode.
Wednesday, May 23, 2001 9:47 AM
Good point, Dutchman...!

Now here's a question: Did the ride e-stop itself? Another question: Was the rider thrown as a result of the E-stop? I remember doing a sanity check on a manual for a Himalaya-type ride and noticing that a normal stop was limited to something like 0.5G and an E-stop was limited to something like 1.25G...and that an E-stop could be triggered by a failed lap bar, meaning that if the lap bar failed the rider in that seat would be tossed out (whoops!).

If there was no failure, then I wonder if this person was riding alone.

The last time I rode a Wipeout I could barely get the lap bar to close, and my legs hurt like crazy when the ride was over because the bar was so tight. Could that have been a contributing cause: ride forces combined with the size of the rider perhaps ultimately breaking the latching rod or the lap bar itself?

John, you're forgetting that there was a rider thrown from a Wipeout at Kennywood some years back...but that was a rider who probably shouldn't have been on the ride in the first place because if I remember correctly he didn't have enough lower body mass to be adequately secured on the ride.

--Dave Althoff, Jr.
Wednesday, May 23, 2001 12:34 PM
Was she hurt? What is this ride? I live in Indiana, I don't know much about SoCal flat rides.

SFGAm: SCREAM. THRILL. REPEAT. Two New Coasters in 2001!

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