Posted Saturday, August 5, 2006 11:05 AM | Contributed by CoastersNSich
Part of the Son of Beast roller coaster at Paramount’s Kings Island must be taken apart and rebuilt under state supervision, a time-consuming process that raises questions about whether the ride will reopen this season. “If they want to operate it again, that’s what they have to do,” said Melanie Wilt, spokeswoman for the Ohio Department of Agriculture, the state agency that regulates amusement park rides. The Son of Beast has been closed since July 9 when 27 people were injured after a particularly rough ride.
Read more from The Enquirer.
I realize this is probably an issue of cost, but let's face it, they're putting a band-aid over the wound that happened on July 9. If there are honest problems with the ride, present since it's construction, nothing is stopping other problems like this one from popping up elsewhere on the track. If this happens again, I can almost guarantee the lawsuits will far outweigh the cost of a large-scale reconstruction.
From an enthusiast's perspective, I was really hoping to read in the article that new trains would arrive. During my rides on Son of Beast, I found the trains to be my biggest problem with the ride. I understand that the park (and, probably even more so, the ride's insurance company) wanted a new restraint system because of the loop, but I still to this day wish they would have just shoehorned an appropriate restraint into PTC trains.
Anyway, I was at the park just two weeks before this incident occurred and had the most awful ride experience on this coaster. I was really hurting and thought my neck was going to snap. The last time I rode SoB was a couple years before, and remember having a smoother ride. This coaster makes a ride on MS feel like an Intamin or B&M.
One is based on this statement
"The park closes for the season on Aug. 23, except for a re-opening during Labor Day weekend. "
we clearly cannot trust this article as thoroughly researched, as they cannot even manage to get the operating schedule correct.
Secondly, the headline here on Cbuzz is misleading, as it's a twist on a quote from the Dept. of Agriculture spokesperson. All they're saying is "If they want to reopen, they HAVE to replace this section of track"
This doesn't mean they won't rework more track, and it also doesn't mean the ride will ever reopen. Let's wait on official word from the park before we assume anything is or is not going to happen. The only thing we can assume is that if it DOES reopen, they will have replaced this section of the ride.
The coaster DOES continue to be popular, especially among the general public. For the life of me I can't figure out why it's popular. I guess its fans like the crap beaten out of them. :-/
In a perfect world PKI would have torched it and replaced it with the Screechin' Eagle, but that's just my fantasy. ;)
I think the wildcard here that could and in my opinion, will lead to SoB's demise is that the park is now under new owners. Cedar Fair has no real vested interest in keeping the coaster going. It's like buying a new house with a troublesome appliance. That appliance cost the previous owners a chunk of change and they'd probably put some money towards trying to repair it before tossing it in favor of a new one that isn't a lemon. But, if you buy the house, that appliance is included with the cost. You really have no vested interest in keeping that going, you're more likely when presented with a repair bill to junk the thing and buy a new one you know will work.
I think if it's a relatively minor track replacement, CF will "patch it up" and let it run a season or two more, but I think you can be sure that in those seasons, SoB's replacement will be in planning and design.
I say let PKI rebuild that section that was bad, you also have to take in consideration that most accidents on coasters are due to the rider doing something stupid.
About Cedar Fair's interest in SOB - I've heard the opposite from a few KI employees. They've said that Cedar Fair people rode it just before or after the acquisition date, and they really enjoyed it, and want to do their best to get it back open and be better than before. Then again, there was Hercules - will they put up with SOB like they did Hercules?
The headline in the article: I submitted the article, but the wording of the title was done by someone by the Enquirer... Maybe I was misled too.
It was one of the most infamous coasters out there... built by the world reknown Harry Traver (1877 - 1961). He built Cyclone in 1927... AND two other similar coasters with a very similar layout in the same time period (known at the time as the "Terrible Trio"). The other two were Lightning at Revere Beach & Cyclone at Palisades Park. The Lightning had a death on the second day of operation when someone plummeted from the coaster... that only lasted 6yrs.
However, the CB Cyclone continued to run until 1946, when ridership was down & maintaince fees were up because too many people watching rather than riding. Most people got hurt from the figure-8 part of the track, not the initial drop or the raised helix. There is a trim at the end of the spiral before the figure 8. Anyway, it was decided to take a lot of parts from that coaster & make the Crystal Beach Comet. The Crystal Beach Comet was born in 1948 as a double out-n-back coaster that continues to this date.
Crystal Beach was closed in 1989, where the last few years, half of the train was turned backwards so riders faced each other. The Comet was preserved from ACE members and auctioned off... bought by Charlie Woods a couple years later, it sat dorment at Fantasy Island in Grand Island, NY until it was moved to Lake George in The Great Escape as The Comet where the coaster was painted white (vs. black), and re-opened with new trains.
It continues today as a high-thrilling ride hitting its 59th anniversary!!!
Soooo, just to let ya know, you really gotta do your homework first, Majorcut! :)
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