Worker struck by Flight Deck train at California's Great America, rider also injured

Posted Sunday, June 14, 2015 5:46 PM | Contributed by Bombayeclipse542

Two people were injured at California's Great America amusement park in Santa Clara on Friday night. Great America officials said Saturday a park associate was struck by a train returning to the station of the Flight Deck roller coaster around 8:10 p.m. The park employee was transported to a hospital with "traumatic" injuries, authorities said.

Read more from KNTV/San Francisco.

Sunday, June 14, 2015 6:46 PM
ApolloAndy's avatar

Shakes head. How does this ever happen?

Hobbes: "What's the point of attaching a number to everything you do?"
Calvin: "If your numbers go up, it means you're having more fun."

Sunday, June 14, 2015 7:08 PM
Rick_UK's avatar

There are a lot of reasons why the incident could have happened on The Smiler, only one reason why stuff like that this happens.

Nothing to see here. Move along.

Sunday, June 14, 2015 7:52 PM


- Johnathan

Sunday, June 14, 2015 11:59 PM

Is it just me or does this seem to happen every year? Hopefully everyone is ok, but smarten up, people!

But then again, what do I know?

Monday, June 15, 2015 12:31 AM
LostKause's avatar

I'm sure most, if not all, parks drill the importance of the lockout/tagout procedure into their employee's heads. I suspect that some employees do not think that that rule applies to them, for whatever reason.

Last edited by LostKause, Monday, June 15, 2015 12:32 AM
Monday, June 15, 2015 12:35 AM

All for a damn cell phone.

Monday, June 15, 2015 12:39 AM

Simple solution to this problem... Key the locks to the low zones the same as the key that runs the ride, and only allow the one key. Then you HAVE TO shut down the ride before you can enter the low zone.

Last edited by ShaneDenmark, Monday, June 15, 2015 10:59 AM

But then again, what do I know?

Monday, June 15, 2015 2:55 AM

If I recall it's supposed to be set up that way to begin with in according to DOSH regulations. I'll be talking to a DOSH inspector in few weeks I ask for clarification from him,

Monday, June 15, 2015 8:23 AM
koolcat1101's avatar

Here goes another avoidable injury!

(Insert funny signature here.)

Monday, June 15, 2015 3:18 PM
rollergator's avatar

The "restricted" in restricted areas applies to guests AND employees.

To borrow from Dave - the machine does not care about you or your well-being, it is a machine. I think there is a strong tendency for employees to become accustomed to the rides and to gradually disregard the awesome power behind all those moving parts. You have to be careful EVERY time to stay uninjured, but you only need to make one careless mistake for a tragedy to happen.

You still have Zoidberg.... You ALL have Zoidberg! (V) (;,,;) (V)

Tuesday, June 16, 2015 5:40 PM

This just seems really strange to me. Someone that was familiar enough to have access to keys to a restricted or "hot" zone on the ride would know they were going into a dangerous area. They would also likely be familiar with the B&M roar so not sure how the train could really sneak up on you.

They were likely breaking rules as well. I worked on a BTR in the late '90s. It was definitely lock out tag out to go into the low zones on the ride. Pretty sure it was even lock out tag out to go anywhere in the infield period.

Wednesday, June 17, 2015 12:11 AM

These incidents seem to happen most frequently with B&M inverts, right? In the case of a standard coaster I would think an intruder would likely have the good sense to stay away from the track. But since the track on an invert is above and the ground below is clear, someone searching the ground may not realize how close they're getting to the actual path of the coaster train until its too late. That, (and the fact that they're dumasses), is all I can think of to explain this recurring phenominum.

Wednesday, June 17, 2015 12:54 PM
rollergator's avatar

^It would happen with the Vekoma inverts as well, but even people oblivious enough to go under an inverted coaster are too smart to ride Vekoma....

Seriously though, between employees and guests....why is it so hard to STAY OUT of danger zones when rides are operational!

You still have Zoidberg.... You ALL have Zoidberg! (V) (;,,;) (V)

Wednesday, June 17, 2015 1:21 PM
janfrederick's avatar

Aside from common sense, ride operators are trained and are tested on safety procedures.

"I go out at 3 o' clock for a quart of milk and come home to my son treating his body like an amusement park!" - Estelle Costanza

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