Posted Monday, September 14, 2020 11:42 AM | Contributed by Jeff
A 21-year-old man fell 200 feet to his death Monday morning while conducting a daily safety check on the StarFlyer attraction in Orlando tourist’s district, deputies said. The fatal accident was reported around 7:40 a.m. at ICON Park on International Drive.
Read more from WKMG/Orlando.
A very sad situation. I'm surprised that someone working on a ride like that isn't equipped with fall protection. Unless he was and there was some sort of failure with that.
I'm sure it has fall protection and that you aren't supposed to climb in it without using it.
That ride is most certainly equipped with fall protection, likely a rail system in the center of the ladder you climb. In most cases with falls like this its the employee not using the system correctly or not using it at all. This never should have happened so I am curious to see the reasoning behind the accident.
Rocky Mountain Construction put up some interesting and inspiring words about the victim, who they've had a working relationship with. It's in their most recent facebook post...
Horrible. Only 21.....
I was about to say something like he was too young to be climbing up that structure alone...but then it occurred to me that I was climbing to the top of some pretty high roller coasters in my late teens and early 20's...so I guess I'm just getting old. I will say that judgment at that age was not a strength of mine. I'm pretty sure I have yet to tell my kids some of the ridiculous things I did while working in amusement parks.
This is a tragedy, no matter how it occurred, and I feel for his family and for any witnesses or coworkers of his that had to see this happen. Not an image easily forgotten.
Knowing he spent some time working with RMC and climbing around coasters makes me even more curious how this accident happened.
Add me to the list. I'd really like to know if he neglected to wear a harness, or if something failed, maybe he needed to move from one spot to the other and slipped before he was latched back on?
But that's why you have two connections, right? You've always got at least one. Agreed that it's surprising this could happen, unless there was an equipment failure.
Short of equipment failure, the only way to fall is operator error. Be that from not using any type of fall protection at all or using it improperly. As a climber if you intend to transfer from one area to another and will require you to unhook, then yes you would use a double lanyard so you are never actually not secure. That is something you learn in the very basic of fall protection training. But the thing is so many people don't think they will be the one who falls because they trust themselves. They never think of all the situations that are out of their control that will cause the fall.
My father in law built a lot of different woodworking projects. Cabinets, tables, etc. Was always using power saws. Very comfortable with them. One time he cut the tip of his thumb off with a circular saw. That could never happen to me because I pretty much never use power saws and would never have my hand within a foot and a half of one. Getting comfortable and lax with something you routinely do is a big risk.
My daugther and I learned double lanyard concept in the 10 minute training for a GoApe ropes course a couple years back. Can also see there where you can get too comfortable with something you do all of the time. For older employees the process may be a total habit (still need to be extremely careful though). Less so with younger employees.
We went for free to GoApe because someone wasn't smart enough to make "get one free" conditional on buying one. My daugther signed us up online. When we arrived, they asked me if we signed up separately. I looked over at my daughter and she said confidently: Yes we did. Definitely not what they intended but whose fault was that?
You can also install permanent retractable lanyards at junction points so you only need to climb with a single lanyard (a double can be bulkier and can get in the way at times.) With the permanent ones, you hook up to that, unhook your lanyard and move to where you can hook it back on, then unhook the retractable. Either way, you shouldn't be in a fall position without being attached to something.
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