Stupid Coaster Passenger

Monday, October 8, 2001 12:53 PM
I found this in the textbook for my "You and the Law" class @ school. As far as I know, it is a hypothetical situation, though I can't say I'd be surprised if it's not, knowing how utterly stupid people can be sometimes. Here it is, quoted verbatim from the book:


Caroline and her friends go to an amusement park. She decides to ride the scariest roller coaster. After each rider is seated, the attendant secures that rider with a rollbar. Caroline tells her friends that she does not need the rollbar. After the first large hill, she detaches it. Later in the ride, she is thrown frrom the roller coaster and is badly hurt.

The section this was in was about comparative negligence, in other words, if Caroline sues the park (and probably the coaster manufacturer as well), and the court finds for her, but also finds that she was partially negligent herself, she won't get all the money she sued for. Personally, I think she acted incredibly stupidly. Why would she think she didn't need the lapbar (probably what "rollbar" in the passage refers to)?

Also, is it possible to disengage the restraints on modern coasters while the ride is underway? One reason we found in class that she could win her suit is that the company should not have made the ride so the restraints could be disengaged during the ride. Now, of the 2 real coasters I've ridden, disengaging Raging Bull's restraints in motion is impossible ( the test seat has a pedal for that purpose). But I'm not so sure that the same is true of Viper's restraints.
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RCT hypercoaster crazy!

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Monday, October 8, 2001 1:38 PM
I think youve answered your own question here? But no there is not to many rides you can unlach any restraints on. except for matterhorn at disneyland which are seat belts that you can unlach with a push of a buttom while the train is in motion. also on the Cyclone at Lakeside park in colorado. all they have is a latch hook seatbelt and they can come undone easily during the ride also. These are the only RC's that i know of that you can undo the restaints on easily. Oh ya what about those galaxy type coasters where you dont have restraints or seatbelts like Not standing anymore Zambizi Zinger recently loacated at Worlds of Fun.


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elevated track in the sky is the only way to fly.

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Monday, October 8, 2001 1:43 PM
Weird someone posted the exact same situation about 3 weeks ago or something. Anyone else remember that?
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Monday, October 8, 2001 2:14 PM
Yeah, I thought this was an old post 'til I looked at the date.
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Monday, October 8, 2001 2:27 PM
Lap bars, OTSRs, etc. almost always cannot be released by a passenger.  Lap belts, usually can be released by the passenger.  I don't think much of the "you didn't idiot proof it" (and my client is an idiot) offense unless the passenger was not mentally competent.
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Monday, October 8, 2001 6:20 PM
When I was a BGT with my friend, we boarded Python and naturally, after you pull down your OTSR's, you give a tug on them upwards just to make sure that they are locked.  Well, my friend did that, and it went back up, but wouldn't come back down.  I noticed that mine did that too but I only did one click up where as he did about 4 or 5 before he stopped.  It must be an early arrow thing.  Sit in the front seat of python next time you are there and you'll know what I mean.
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Past this point of no return your only choice is freeze or burn.
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Monday, October 8, 2001 7:09 PM
Another thought.  Most states now have laws requiring you to follow the park rules and operator instructions.  By disengaging the lap bar she would be violating a state law making her accident a consequence of her illegal action.  This would certainly weaken her case in court if not outright prevent it from ever getting there.  She might also win a Darwin award.

Remember:  It's impossible to make anything fool proof because fools are so ingenious.

*** This post was edited by Jim Fisher on 10/8/2001. ***

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Saturday, October 13, 2001 4:37 AM
Yeah, I did post on this topic before, but I couldn't find my old post so I posted again. Thank goodness for the "Favorite Topics" feature!
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RCT hypercoaster crazy!
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Saturday, October 13, 2001 4:44 AM

Jim Fisher said:
"I don't think much of the "you didn't idiot proof it" (and my client is an idiot) offense unless the passenger was not mentally competent."

Jim, in principle, I agree with you here. But in light of the notorious "McDonald's Coffee Case". I wouldn't be so sure that being a moron *isn't* a good strategy.
jeremy

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"Nobody writes about the planes that land." Steve Salerno Washington Times 7-10-01

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