News! A woman fell from Dollywood's Train ride this afternoon while the train was in motion. The woman is in stable condition, but was flown to the University of Tennessee Medical Center in Knoxville, via LifeStar. I will get a link posted once the news web site is updated with this breaking story.
Park Officials say the ride will remain closed until their investigation is over. *** Edited 4/14/2004 10:10:49 PM UTC by CoastermanX***
The seasonal parks haven't even opened for the summer and there have already been at least 3 accidents this month. I fear that journalists will jump on this for another wave of "Are coasters safe?" reports.
I'd hate to fall from this train as there are some really steep drop offs near the tracks in a couple of the wooded areas. I just rode it not 2 weeks ago and was thinking to myself how bad (and easy) it'd be to fall off this train. Didn't help that I'd just ate a huge turkey leg plate and was quite sleepy from the 4 AM drive over. I found myself nodding off near the end of this very peaceful train ride.
Well, I'm going to Dollywood tomorrow...my girlfriend is gonna be upset that the train is closed! This thing has been an accident waiting to happen for years, and I am actually surprised that it was not a child, though...I hope the woman is okay!!
The train ops will not allow children to sit on the outside edges of the train's benches. They specifically made a big deal of this when I was on it. The ropes would probably still be a good idea though. I don't think I've ever been on a train with seat belts, but we might see that if a lawsuit comes of this.
Dollywood Express has a "two seat contact" rule. Your seat must reamain in contact with the trains seat. She had something spilled on her and jumped up.
I'm not saying she is at fault. I'm not saying Dollywood is at fault. But people must realize that if they stand up on a ride while in motion they can fall. *** Edited 4/14/2004 11:51:07 PM UTC by Char Spratt***
Hopefully the train will be operating again by this weekend. It's one of my favorite rides at the park.
And, I don't think any modifications should be made to the train car seats(Although I'm sure there will be). The Dollywood Express has been operating with sideless cars for the last 17/42 years without anybody falling off.
The Dollywood train crew is very safety conscious as well. One time I was on the train and they stopped it out in the middle of the woods because some kids were switching places on one of the benches.
Parks like Busch Gardens, Cedar Point, Kings Island, Disney World, and may others are operating trains without sides on them, and there is no need for all of these parks to modify their railroad equipment just because of one incident.
*** Edited 4/15/2004 12:54:29 AM UTC by Dukeis#1***
The woman fell off while the train was stopped, as reported on the 11o'clock news while on top of the mountain. The only reason the train should stop up there, would be fore the robbery scene, which was suspended last season.
How do you fall off of a stopped train, and sustain such injuries? the area around which the train should have stopped at is nothing but grass.
I simply don't know what to think-but it seems it was purely the woman's fault. maybe an employee such as Char Spratt could shed some light on the subject.
I just rode that train last week! One of the weirdest things is a remark that the conductor says just before the ride starts. They insist on children under 12 to be sitting on the inside between adults, so the remark went something like this... "We don't want to see a child fall off the train, but for some reason, we don't seem to care if an adult falls off." I know that it's said just for fun, but hearing about this now really creeps me out.
Geez, I hope that she'll be ok. From what I remember, those seats sit pretty high up from ground level (5 feet or so?), so even just falling off a stationary train could cause some serious injuries.
By the way, why did they stop the train robbery? I was waiting for it to happen, but it never did. In fact, the train never stopped anywhere during the ride.
Personally I hope she is ok. Or will be ok soon. To me it wont matter who is at fault in this incident. Or whether the train was moving or not. If it was she is lucky she did not get run over by the train. I hope this is the last accident I hear about this year. PERIOD. But I doubt it will be.