The safety of roller coasters

Wednesday, May 30, 2001 7:18 PM
I keep on hearing USA Today and CNN talk about the unsafety of roller coasters. A few years back I heard that roller coasters are unsafe when a guy falls out of a stand-up roller coaster and a kid falls out of a gyro-drop. They fail to mention riders stupidity. Today, I heard about the look of a roller coaster can scare of injure someone. The ride can scare someone beyond belief, they ride it, and come of with head injuries from your blood flow. Do any one of you feel like breaking your computers when you hear this crap? Or am I the only one?
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Wednesday, May 30, 2001 7:29 PM
I can imagine people having heart attacks on coasters, and maybe even blacking out once or twice, but not any of this crap.

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I don't need drugs to get high, I need coasters!"
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Thursday, May 31, 2001 4:41 AM
Anyone notice that the only time they do these kinds of things is when the real news is slow? "Gee, let's fill all this time up with...... How unsafe amusement rides are! That one always gets them!"

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.:| Brandon Rodriguez |:.
http://www.coasters2k.com
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Thursday, May 31, 2001 5:27 AM
The only time I've ever gotten hurt on a coaster was at PGA. It was on Green Slime Mine Car. I wasn't paying attention and my ankle slammed into the lapbar and it scrached it (;)) But really I don't see how they can blame PGA for the kid that feel from drop zone because officials said when the car came down the restraint was not open.

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AKA V2 at CCN! AKA SFMWManiac at SFMWOnline!
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Thursday, May 31, 2001 5:30 AM

coastergoose said:
"I keep on hearing USA Today and CNN talk about the unsafety of roller coasters. A few years back I heard that roller coasters are unsafe when a guy falls out of a stand-up roller coaster and a kid falls out of a gyro-drop. They fail to mention riders stupidity. Today, I heard about the look of a roller coaster can scare of injure someone. The ride can scare someone beyond belief, they ride it, and come of with head injuries from your blood flow. Do any one of you feel like breaking your computers when you hear this crap? Or am I the only one?"


Oh yeah, I know exactly what you mean. The one about the rider falling out of a Standup is really nothing but stupidity. He wanted to raise his hands up, but of course the shoulder restraints limit how far you can raise them. (good example on my coasterbuzz profile pic) So, being really stupid, he squirms and gets both arms through the top of the restraint. Going through a loop, he simply fell straight out onto the boardwalk below. How ignorant is that? Rollercoasters are only as safe as we ride them. Yeah, it's fun when you get airtime, but some things some riders do is loosen the lap bar beyond the safety limit. Come on people. Use common sense! *tisk tisk tisk*

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Shawn Bailes
110 Drumline
http://ohiodrumline.tripod.com/main.htm
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Thursday, May 31, 2001 7:24 AM
Sorry, Shawn, but you're wrong about the guy on Shockwave. I don't know how he got out of the seat, but the incident happened on a turnaround, had nothing to do with the loop. My understanding is that he was deliberately attempting to exit the train, and either missed the walkway he was aiming for, or impacted the walkway with enough force to kill him.

As for the Giant Drop incident at PGA, I'm afraid I have to blame Intamin for that one. There is a design flaw with the Giant Drop in that a shoulder bar as implemented on that ride will not prevent a rider from submarining. I'm convinced that the shoulder bar was down and locked (remember there was no safety belt) when the accident happened, and if someone tries to argue that the bar was open, a videotape will appear of somebody riding the tower with the shoulder bar removed...

--Dave Althoff, Jr.
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Thursday, May 31, 2001 7:30 AM
I heard from a reliable source that the kid who fell out of the Giant Drop was not tall enough, but somehow got on the ride (it has happened before). I also heard he had some sort of disability which made him too small for the harness, but was never checked with tender love and care (it has happened before). That is why he fell out of the seat.

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TITAN IS THE TEXAS' GIANT


-Coastergoose
Another Coasterbuzzer
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Thursday, May 31, 2001 10:26 AM
Most accidents on coasters are the fault of sheer stupidity. For example, those two kids who died on Drop Zone and PKI, they were fooling around and though it was a tragic event you can't blame the park for the accident.
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Thursday, May 31, 2001 10:43 AM
1. All states need Rider Responsibility laws.

2. Parks should consider having PR people do assemblies at schools -- kids would love to hear about the park --that would incorporate how you should behave to be safe, and would educate them on how the laws, restraints, and other restrictions work and why they are there.

Face it, we're gonna see "unsafe park" propoganda every May/June when the parks open. It's a given for the news media. An easy out.

But, more importantly, this ain't your grandma's amusement industry! There are more potential hazards than there were even 30 years ago, and people do not necessarily understand that rides are (or potentially can be) dangerous.

An article I wrote once quoted an industry exec (I think) as saying something to the effect of "People expect perfect safety with the illusion of danger." Parks make it look easy -- cool graphics and theming, etc.; that's why people lock their brains in the trunk when they go into the park. They believe all the thinking's been done for them! They forget that these are, at bottom, very large, dangerous pieces of machinery.
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Thursday, May 31, 2001 10:49 AM

RideMan said:
"I don't know how he got out of the seat, but the incident happened on a turnaround, had nothing to do with the loop. My understanding is that he was deliberately attempting to exit the train, and either missed the walkway he was aiming for, or impacted the walkway with enough force to kill him."
The investigators from the sheriff's office indicated that the Shockwave fatality some how wriggled out of the harness (attested to by his friend who was riding next to him) and was ejected from the train while it was traveling through a turn at 40 MPH. This would indicate that it wasn't on the final turn into the station or anywhere near the platform.
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Thursday, May 31, 2001 11:08 AM

Kevin said:
"Most accidents on coasters are the fault of sheer stupidity. For example, those two kids who died on Drop Zone and PKI, they were fooling around and though it was a tragic event you can't blame the park for the accident."


Only one kid died on a Drop Zone, the Drop Zone @ PGA. Nobody died on PKI'S, and the PGA death was not due to rider stupidity.
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Thursday, May 31, 2001 11:30 AM
Here is a BIG list of Injury's through the years in carnival ride's and park's.

http://members.aol.com/rides911/rides.htm

http://members.aol.com/rides911/accidents.htm

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Army rangers lead the way *** This post was edited by supermandl on 5/31/2001. ***
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Thursday, May 31, 2001 12:25 PM
A lot of people don't think they can get hurt. A lot of people also think park's make up these speeds. Example: In line for BKF someone behind me says,"Man it'd be cool to jump out of the car!" drunk friend replies, "That'd be wicked awesome!" they don't think they can get hurt. The day that the kid died on DZ and week on Shockwave some idiot at PKI stood up on the log ride. He almost fell out but was pulled down by someone. It must've been rider stupidity week or something;)

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HurricaneGeauga- Just in case
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Thursday, May 31, 2001 12:37 PM
For another perspective on ride safety, I suggest taking a look at www.saferparks.org . That's the web site put together by someone whose kid lost some toes to a roller coaster. Her approach is an interesting one because she's looking at amusement parks from a child protection point of view. As a society we have worked so hard over the years to make life as risk-free as possible (I couldn't believe the amount of crap I had to deal with on my new lawnmower!) that we're not teaching anybody responsibility anymore. So when you have an environment where most, but not all, of the risks are mitigated, you're asking for trouble.

Amusement rides are, for the most part, safe. On a per-trip basis, you're far more likely to be injured on an airplane (widely touted as the safest way to travel) than on a roller coaster. But risks still exist. Some risks can be minimized. Sometimes mitigating hazards create new hazards (ever watch kids get caught in queue gates?). Some risks aren't even identified until someone learns about them the hard way. But that's true of anything. The key is to take a realistic view of the hazards involved. If it were as dangerous as the news shows keep implying, most of us would be dead by now.

--Dave Althoff, Jr.
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Thursday, May 31, 2001 2:57 PM
Yes accidents can be riders faults, but mechanical faults and design faults can also play a part. Not everyone who gets injured or killed caused there own accident. Still I think the media does blow things out of proportion because everyones competing with each other for the new sensational story. Ever watch a news magazine show? You'll never want to leave the house.
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