When roller coasters attack!

Friday, July 13, 2007 5:54 AM
I'm not sure if it's sarcasm, ignorance, or a dangerous combination, but Bob Russ from the Canton Repository writes in his latest column, "If I was ever to visit an amusement park again, I'd be tempted to buy additional insurance, just in case. In fact, amusement parks might want to take a page from airlines and offer extra insurance right before you board a ride."

He must really be scared of driving, riding a bike, or even watching his town's fireworks show.

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Friday, July 13, 2007 7:32 AM
Or eat breakfast, total drowning hazard...
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Friday, July 13, 2007 8:06 AM
I am glad that he is a writer. This way he can work from home. I'd hate for him to leave his house and maybe trip over a stray pebble or crack in his own sidewalk. Then again the bathroom is the most dangerous room in the house...I guess he doesn't bathe.
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Friday, July 13, 2007 8:41 AM
LOL! I had to write the guy and tell him to be careful crossing the street, he just might get struck by lightning.

Sounds like he needs prozac, or a girlfriend.....?? Then again both of those can kill ya. ;)

Hilarious article! Thanks for sharing that, Gemini.

He may just be onto something. I can see parks selling extra insurance right next to the Qbot stand. ;) THere could be an extra wristband for that. ;)

It will either be that or you have to sign a waiver everytime you enter a park.

Now THAT is scary!

-Tina

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Friday, July 13, 2007 9:07 AM
Ah yes. The same media that's telling us that the Iraq war is a lost cause. Don't believe everything you see; in print, TV, and especially the Internet.

~Rob "Yeah! I went there." Willi

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Friday, July 13, 2007 9:44 AM
Yep, sounds like the Canton Suppository to me.

He probably uses a lead-lined shield around his VTD. That radiation off monitors can be life threatening, ya know!
;)

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Friday, July 13, 2007 10:01 AM
Bob, you should be ashamed of yourself. Yes, accidents happen at amusement parks, but if you had done your homework instead of playing into media hype and sensationalism, you would have realized that the amusement park industry's safety record is phenomenal, and the odds of being injured on a ride is incredibly slim. Millions upon millions of people go to amusement parks across the world with out incident every year, but I suppose that isn't as interesting to report as a handful of isolated incidents that do not reflect the state of safety precautions across the industry.

Please, next time you decide to publish something like

"Not so, however, at the largest amusement parks, where injuries - and death - are becoming much more common"

a credible source would be very, very welcome.

Do your homework next time,

Matt

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Friday, July 13, 2007 10:49 AM

HeyIsntThatRob? said:
The same media that's telling us that the Iraq war is a lost cause.
The media isn't telling us that, that's just what rational people can observe.
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Friday, July 13, 2007 11:06 AM
The dude is just scared or todays coasters. ;)
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Friday, July 13, 2007 11:22 AM

Jeff said:

HeyIsntThatRob? said:
The same media that's telling us that the Iraq war is a lost cause.
The media isn't telling us that, that's just what rational people can observe.

This is just going to open a whole different can of worms that I don't think anyone wants to do around here.

So, to stray from this big argument, lets just talk about what park is better, Cedar Point or Six Flags Magic Mountain.

[/sarcasm]

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Friday, July 13, 2007 11:41 AM
I posted a response that would be appropriate here in the "another day, another tragic death" thread.

We just need to ride this season out. Next uear the media will find another topic to sensationalize. The American attention span is almost up on this story.

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Friday, July 13, 2007 12:06 PM
I don't see how this season is any different from any other season in recent times. Again, we're more aware of what's going on because of instant access to internet news stories and videos. And even before instant news, there was always new stories that would make your local paper the next day.

I can definitely see how this could make someone whose not an enthusiast (please people, start thinking outside of your box) start to wonder if it's safe for them to enter a themepark.

Numbers and statistics mean absolutely nothing to the average person. We could have a whole column with as many "Amusement parks are safer than crossing the street" replies as The Flying Turns page and your not going to soothe someone's rational fear of rides.

Most rides are multi-ton machines, and many are under the control of sophisticated computer systems. Things go bad sometimes and the stakes of getting seriously injured or killed on such rides can be great when accidents do occur. Why this escapes the majority of enthusiasts minds, I don't understand.

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Friday, July 13, 2007 12:14 PM
I also wrote a letter to Bob, and I agree with the above posts, in that it will "scare off" some already anxious customers. Kids may also fall victim to stories like this...seeing it on the news, etc., or on the internet may make many children too scared to go on any ride.

So disappointing to read. *** Edited 7/13/2007 4:16:12 PM UTC by OhioStater***

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Friday, July 13, 2007 12:30 PM
^But hang on, is it your responsibility to defend against every article like this when the last I checked you don't own an amusement park or carnival?

Should we take the newspaper away from kids, turn off the evening news, or limit kids access to only "happy" stories on the internet? That might work in a communist country, but in the rest of the free world, we're entitled to read and see whatever we like.

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Friday, July 13, 2007 12:40 PM

HeyIsntThatRob? said:
Ah yes. The same media that's telling us that the Iraq war is a lost cause. Don't believe everything you see; in print, TV, and especially the Internet.

~Rob "Yeah! I went there." Willi


That's true. I only believe what my brother has told me about the war. He was over there. He lived it. He said the media sugarcoats everything. He told me what REALLY happened......what the media and the government doesn't want you to see.

I take everything I see in the media with a grain of salt anyway, especially when they try to sensationalize something like the Iraqi war or a coaster accident.

-Tina

*** Edited 7/13/2007 4:42:07 PM UTC by coasterqueenTRN***

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Friday, July 13, 2007 12:40 PM
"The Pen is mightier than the Sword"
-Edward Bulwer-Lytton

Good quote, but both objects can kill you when they decide to attack!

Even Monty Python showed us what a highly motivated rabbit can do.

;) *** Edited 7/13/2007 6:56:34 PM UTC by FLYINGSCOOTER***

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Friday, July 13, 2007 1:20 PM

Intamin Fan said:


Most rides are multi-ton machines, and many are under the control of sophisticated computer systems. Things go bad sometimes and the stakes of getting seriously injured or killed on such rides can be great when accidents do occur.


That excerpt also describes the two hundred million vehicles on roads and highways across this country. Around 40,000 people are killed in vehicular accidents every year-- or over 100 per day. But unless the accident closes a road you routinely drive, it isn't news. It's a good bet that the same day any of these park accidents occurred, the local paper had an item several pages in about a serious auto accident nearby.

For example, the Reading (PA) Eagle recently did a story that mentioned in the past several months, 6 or 8 high school kids were killed in auto accidents. That number is greater than the number of park fatalities this year, but I doubt this story was reported in Sandusky, Kentucky, or Westchester County.

News isn't about the usual stuff that happens every day, they only report rare and unusual occurrences, which thankfully park accidents still are. But by giving widespread coverage to each of these accidents it gives the impression parks and rides are more dangerous than the hundreds of boring mundane things that really do harm and kill us.

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Friday, July 13, 2007 1:25 PM
Meh.

These people & opinions will always be out there.

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Friday, July 13, 2007 1:33 PM
This guy didn't do any research (well not much). For example he using the Playland park accident to try to back up his arguement, but he doesn't mention that the girl was on her KNEES and not sitting down, but somehow he tried to spin it to help his point.

Less than 1 person per one million rides has to go to a hospital because a ride problem. Per one million people who play billards, eight people have to go to the hospital. So my question has this guy every thought about taking insurance out before playing pool next time?

Despite being almost 7-years-old Jim Fisher's here on CoasterBuzz is still a great read: http://www.coasterbuzz.com/ed-lyingwithstats.htm *** Edited 7/13/2007 5:37:26 PM UTC by Andrew***

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Friday, July 13, 2007 2:47 PM
"Numbers and statistics mean absolutely nothing to the average person."

That's not really justification for anything, though, that's just sad. It's unfortunately a sign of the times, though, when there's a happy culture of people being completely ignorant about all things scientific and objective. For a whole host of reasons, a lot of them religious, there's a huge population out there that can't grasp the simplest concepts concerning imperical data or scientific thought. And not only can they not do it, they're *proud* they can't do it. And they vote!

I mean, according to a recent study 1 in 5 Americans think the sun revolves around the Earth. That still shouldn't mean that doltish pseudo-journalists should be off the hook, either.

"^But hang on, is it your responsibility to defend against every article like this when the last I checked you don't own an amusement park or carnival?"

Totally beside the point, totally irelevant. It's not about who owns what parks because unfortunately lazy, reactionary opinion pieces like this could one day have real life, negative effects on the industry, and that doesn't just affect the people who own the parks, that affects everybody who patronizes them and the businesses who also thrive and are stimulated partially because of their proximity to parks.

"Should we take the newspaper away from kids, turn off the evening news, or limit kids access to only "happy" stories on the internet?"

No, not at all, and nobody here is suggesting that. It's not a matter of what is "happy" or what isn't, it's a matter of making claims like this:

Not so, however, at the largest amusement parks, where injuries - and death - are becoming much more common.

and not only not giving us some sort of credible source but not giving any source at all. Opininon piece or not, one of the very first things you learn in even the most introductory High School journalism classes is if you're going to make claims like this, you need a "according to" or "says" or "such and such reports" statement to back that claim up. I mean his statement there isn't a subjective opinion, that's something that can be quanitifed by real experts, something he is not.

"That might work in a communist country, but in the rest of the free world, we're entitled to read and see whatever we like."

Right...and I mean it's obvious you can read and see whatever you like even when it's totally not based on anything in reality. It is then the public's job to say "Hold on bucko, that's not right." Otherwise if the public doesn't hold journalists accountable for what they publish, there's really no point. Otherwise the National Enquirer would be considered a reputable news source.

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