State says Son of Beast accident was due to design flaw, loop will be removed

Posted Wednesday, December 13, 2006 7:16 PM | Contributed by supermandl

A roller coaster's wooden support beams were not designed to bear the ride's weight, causing a dip in the track that jolted 27 passengers injured in July, state investigators said Wednesday. The design flaw with the looping, wooden Son of Beast coaster at Paramount's Kings Island caused a vertical support called a bent leg to crack, said the Ohio Department of Agriculture, which regulates the state's amusement parks. The park says removing the loop will allow the use of lighter trains.

Read more from AP via The Akron Beacon Journal.

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Wednesday, December 13, 2006 7:26 PM
WTF??? Is there really any point to SOB now?
Wednesday, December 13, 2006 7:27 PM
matt.'s avatar I'm fine with the loop going if this means new trains. Huge news.
Wednesday, December 13, 2006 7:40 PM
DawgByte II's avatar So... the structure's smoothest & possibly strongest part of the ride is going to be removed?

Wasn't the loop actually steel all the way through, not to mention where the accident didn't happen?

So the biggest gimmick & draw to the ride is going, and now... it's just going to be Beast's b!tch, for lack of a better term.

Wednesday, December 13, 2006 7:44 PM its just a boring bunch of turns. Fun....
Wednesday, December 13, 2006 7:58 PM
Great - so the entire purpose of the ride is gone. So now we have lots of boring and bumpy turns without (as others have pointed out - although irrelevant to the issue) the strongest part of the structure.

However, my guess is that our reaction wasn't uncommon among park officials - they know that the loop is what attracts many, and without it, the ride will just be a really big and clumsy coaster thing that goes fast and turns in circles.

SOB's always been bumpy - THAT'S WHY they should have had Intamin do their prefab thing!

Wednesday, December 13, 2006 8:01 PM
Don't be so pessimistic about the whole change, people. SoB could now get trains that are able to track around the turns smoothly.

If you threw a pair of GCI's on the ride, put in a double down to replace the loop, and dropped a tunnel or two on the ride, it'd be pretty freakin fierce...

I, for one, am INCREDIBLY excited about riding the new and revamped version.

Wednesday, December 13, 2006 8:06 PM
The reason for the loop removal is due to the inertia of the trains I assume. The heavier trains at that point in the track have more "oompf" to make it through the loop. With lighter trains, the speed will not be as great at that point in the ride so the loop has to be removed.

Correct me if I am wrong, im yet to take college physics and the physics I had in H.S was, well, non-existant. :)

Wednesday, December 13, 2006 8:07 PM
Haha, what a bizarre story. I'm with Goliathfreak. So what's the catch now? Is it still the tallest wooden?
Wednesday, December 13, 2006 8:10 PM
sirloindude's avatar I'm quite excited to hear this. Seriously, the loop didn't do much for me. It was more a novelty than a necessity. To be able to experience the rest of the ride with better trains...well, now I have more reason to ride it again. I think it's a pretty awesome layout and it will be nice to experience it in more comfort.
Wednesday, December 13, 2006 8:17 PM
If switching to lighter trains means a smoother ride then I'm all for it and might actually have to make it a point to ride it again.
Wednesday, December 13, 2006 8:37 PM
Mamoosh's avatar wasn't the loop actually steel all the way through...

The loop support structure was steel...the track on the loop itself was wood.

...not to mention where the accident didn't happen?

Um, did you read the story?

"A roller coaster's wooden support beams were not designed to bear the ride's weight, causing a dip in the track that jolted 27 passengers injured in July, state investigators said Wednesday."

"The failure of one bent leg led to the failure of two other bent legs, causing a slight dip in the track," a statement from the department said. That dip created a pothole effect that led to the riders' injuries.

Wednesday, December 13, 2006 9:02 PM
coasterqueenTRN's avatar Bummer. I was never a fan of SOB but I LOVED that loop.

Oh well. :) Maybe the much-needed TLC will inspire me to give it another chance next year. :)


Wednesday, December 13, 2006 9:44 PM
Loop or no loop, I say tear the whole thing down anyway. High winds collapsed part of the structure before it was completed, and they should have abandoned the thing right then. We already have The Beast, and SOB will never be anything like it. Rip it out - the amount of land the coaster takes up could better be used for some new water rides and a world-class, state of the art steel coaster.
Wednesday, December 13, 2006 10:22 PM
Hey hey hey everyone, lol.. lets take a minute to feel some sympathy for the park loving GP of Ohio ok? Do you knwo how confused these people are and will be?

"hey, I like geauga lake and whats this about Six Flags? lets go to sea world too!"

"wait, GL is wned by Six Flags flags? Six Flags Ohio, hm ok.. lets try that.."

"Whats Six Flags Worlds of Adventure, is that a new park? oh it used to be Six Flags Ohio, Its Sea World too? Oh Sea World is owned by Six Flags now, oh ok..."

"Hey check it out, Son Of Beast, worlds only looping wooden coaster cool its at Paramount's Kings Island"

"Hey lets go to Six Flags Ohio, I mean Worlds of Adventure.. oh wait, its now call Geuga lake or is that a new park, werent they there before? Does Six Flags exist anymore, theres still road signs for it somehow everywhere.., and theres no Seaworld part now, oh hm, so its just Geauga Lake? and Hurrican Hannas?"

"come on lets go ride Xflight at Six Flags, I mean, Geauga Lake and Hurricane Hannas, or sorry Wildwater Kingdom, wait its gone? hm, well lets go to Paramounts Kings Island.."

"Wait, worlds only wooden looping coaster, wheres the loop, is that coaster still here? and hey isnt that X Flight from Six Flags, i mean Gauga Lake?? its here now?, this isnt a Paramount park anymore, is paramount gone? why is it still called Paramount's? Wait its owned by the poeple who have Six Flags Ohio and sea world, I mean Worlds of Adventure, I mean Geauga lake? Wait and theyre all owned by the same company that owns Cedar Poi *BOOM!!!!*"

Their heads are going crazy now, I mean they were practically in a war zone of 4 major park chains (Cedar Fair, Six Flags, Sea World at one time, and Paramount Parks) Who fought and eventually Cedar Fair just come in and swallowed everyone up lol.
*** This post was edited by P18 12/13/2006 10:31:32 PM ***

Wednesday, December 13, 2006 10:24 PM
Am I the only one that is really excited about getting rid of those wretched trains?
Wednesday, December 13, 2006 10:53 PM
I hope they have much more leg room! My knees were sore every time I rode it, just because of the hand holds. There needs to be padding there instead.
Wednesday, December 13, 2006 11:03 PM
So let me throw this out for all you credit whores out there...

Is this a whole new credit for you! The Original SOB and Loopless SOB!!!!!

I really hope it improves the ride. I wish I were still in Ohio to find out. Let me know...I know you will.

Wednesday, December 13, 2006 11:16 PM
Acoustic Viscosity's avatar If it's a new credit, then so is Racer after they removed the final bunny hop on both sides. ;)
Wednesday, December 13, 2006 11:16 PM
I wonder how Cedar Fair will remarket the ride. All the signs, logos teeshirts and everything with SOB on it has an image of the loop. I don't really remember the speed going into the loop, but does anyone think that other track alterations will be needed to deal with this change in momentum?

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