Guest taken to hospital after metal object falls off TTD

Monday, August 23, 2021 3:22 PM

Update on the investigation can be found here. Approximately, the 3 minute mark.

He mentions that 25 feet of the track had impact damage. If I'm not mistaken, doesn't that almost sound like sabotage?

I haven't heard any reports of the green train shaking violently as the piece flew off, so I can't imagine that the impact damage was caused by this specific incident.

Last edited by 2020TpForSale, Monday, August 23, 2021 3:29 PM

Campfreak06, reborn

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Monday, August 23, 2021 3:32 PM
TheAmazementPark!'s avatar

Sounds like metal fatigue, if half of the bolts were still in place. Impact damage could be from the bracket ricocheting off said supports before impacting the guest.

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Monday, August 23, 2021 3:33 PM

Brendan71388 said:

- The doctor girlfriend referenced earlier appears to have little knowledge of EMS protocols.

Yes, you are absolutely correct.

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Monday, August 23, 2021 4:33 PM
Jeff's avatar

A metal part detached at 100+ mph. Which part of that surprises you that it would severely damage the track?


Jeff - Advocate of Great Great Tunnels™ - Co-Publisher - PointBuzz - CoasterBuzz - Blog - Music

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Monday, August 23, 2021 4:36 PM

Well, at the very least that means 25 feet of track needs replaced, and in addition the damaged train will need repaired as well as any electrical components damaged on the track. This, in addition to any potential safety improvements made to the queue line means they certainly could reopen the ride next year, but it’ll be costly, barring any other significant discoveries.

I suppose no news is good news for the woman who was injured, hopeful that she pulls through.

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Monday, August 23, 2021 4:41 PM

Jeff said:

A metal part detached at 100+ mph. Which part of that surprises you that it would severely damage the track?

I guess I was imagining the part flying directly off, not following the path of the train. But I guess it makes sense that it hung on by a thread damaging the track before It finally became detached and flew off completely. See, that's why I preface a lot of my posts with something to the extent of "I'm probably showing my ignorance...." Thanks for inducing some common sense, Jeff!

Last edited by 2020TpForSale, Monday, August 23, 2021 4:41 PM

Campfreak06, reborn

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Monday, August 23, 2021 4:42 PM

This is very sad and I hope the woman makes a full recovery. Not hearing that she is improving is not a good sign though in regards to the severity of her injury IMO.

I just wanted to point out that Dragster is likely to reopen with mitigating factors in place rather than being removed. Those could include rerouting the queue line, enclosing it, and/or adding a taller fence with tighter mesh to the parts of the coaster that are near the ground. And of course bolt replacement will likely be done more often from now on if that turns out to be the cause of the incident.

One of Dragster's decorative Goodyear tires fell off of at high speed in 2003. Thankfully no one was injured. The coaster reopened. They were later removed along with the decorative spoiler and replaced with another row of seats.

https://forums.pointbuzz.com/forums/topic/big-slick-tire-falls-off

https://coasterbuzz.com/Forums/Topic/good-year-tire-falls-from-top-...l-dragster

The Dragster launch cable snapped embedding shards of metal into some riders at least twice. The coaster reopened. Thankfully the injuries were minor.

https://www.beaconjournal.com/article/20140714/NEWS/307149411

https://fox8.com/news/launch-cable-detaches-on-cedar-points-top-thr...ed-monday/

The same thing happened on Xcelerator at Knott's Berry Farm and it reopened.

https://abc7.com/archive/7021497/

Someone in the front seat of Dragster was hit by a bird during the launch. The coaster remained open. The same thing has also happened on two similar coasters and they remain open.

https://coastercritic.com/2012/07/bird-hits-boy-while-riding-kingda...r-coaster/

Nascar and IndyCar fans have repeatedly been injured by debris and tires getting through the catch fence over the years during bad accidents but they continue to hold races and to allow people to buy tickets to sit in the seats closest to the fence with the highest risk of injury when an incident like that occurs.

https://apnews.com/article/86f2b06c102a47808ef71f07d4aec728

Knowing all of this, I have continued to enjoy riding Dragster over the years and in spite of the arms down audio and sign, many people including myself still put them up during the launch, even in the front row. I guess we accept the slight risk of something going wrong rather than staying at home constantly worrying about the dangers we face in everyday life. I will make sure to have sunglasses (with a strap) if riding in the front seat of Dragster in the future after the wind irritated my eyes while wearing contact lenses last time.

Son of Beast formerly at Kings Island sent a train of 27 riders to the hospital. Thankfully the injuries were not life threatening. It reopened the next year with the loop removed and new trains. Admittedly it may not be a good example since it was later closed and demolished after a woman with a burst blood vessel in her brain claimed that it was caused by the coaster. But it was also the ride with the highest number of injury reports in the state during the time period from when it opened until then.

http://www.wcpo.com/news/2006/local/07/09/kings_island_ax.html]https://web.archive.org/web/20060720123935/http://www.wcpo.com/news...nd_ax.html

https://www.daytondailynews.com/news/local/son-beast-report-finds-i...uoVN3P8QJ/

Unfortunately Six Flags New England, Six Flags Over Texas, and Holiday World have all had someone die from falling out of a coaster, yet all of those coasters reopened.

Holiday World also had someone come back unresponsive on The Voyage due to a torn artery this year and she later died. The coaster was inspected that day and reopened the next day. I happened to be at the park and rode it multiple times the day it reopened.

I am in no way discounting the injuries and loss of life, just showing what has happened historically after injuries or deaths related to roller coasters in the US. The risk of dying in a car accident remains significantly higher than the risk of dying as a result of a roller coaster.

Last edited by cdrptrks, Monday, August 23, 2021 5:30 PM

Four discount funday tickets to Cedar Point: $130.96
Overnight stay at Breakers Express: $70
Riding rides the size of skyscrapers while "legally" breaking the local speed limit: Priceless

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Monday, August 23, 2021 5:22 PM

Sidenote: Does Pointbuzz still offer an Ad-free subscription. If so, can someone send me the info on how to sign up?

I'm more than willing to pay the big bucks. These ads are annoying!


Campfreak06, reborn

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Monday, August 23, 2021 5:36 PM

Yes: https://pointbuzz.com/content/pointbuzz-premium

Last edited by cdrptrks, Monday, August 23, 2021 5:36 PM
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Monday, August 23, 2021 5:46 PM

^hmmm. when I click join now, it takes me to a blank white screen.


Campfreak06, reborn

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Monday, August 23, 2021 6:11 PM
Thabto's avatar

Here is an update on the victims condition. According to her family she is fighting for her life. Also this article goes into some details about the investigation press conference that was linked a few posts ago.

https://www.cantonrep.com/story/news/local/2021/08/23/cedar-point-a...nn31jtuW_k


Brian
Valravn Rides: 24| Steel Vengeance Rides: 27| Dragster Rollbacks: 1
2021 Visits: 5

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Monday, August 23, 2021 7:37 PM

I didn't like the phrasing indicating that "half of the bolts" were still in the train. Assuming that the object we saw from that other source was, in fact, the part in question (more about that in a moment) it looks like it might have been held in place with two bolts. The language implies that one bolt came out and the other didn't. I suspect that what was meant was that the bolts failed, with half the bolt still in the train and half the bolt...now missing.

I hadn't thought about the existence of a flag under the Dragster train, as most modern rides just use the brake fins and count them to handle check-in and check-out. Using check-in and check-out flags is the 'old school' way to do it. And you can easily see an example of that on Iron Dragon, which has a steel plate over the first wheel carrier on one side, and over the last wheel carrier on the other...a check-in/check-out pair. Dragster lacks brake fins on the train, so using the flags is a logical alternative.

Most of the flags I have seen on coasters are smaller than this part on Dragster. But then, early on they were having a problem with Dragster because of its extremely high speed. At the end of the launch track, the train would blow past the sensor so fast that the sensor couldn't see it. There are two solutions to that problem, and as I understand it, Cedar Point did both: first, use faster sensors; second use a longer flag so that it spends more time in front of the sensor.

--Dave Althoff, Jr.



/X\ *** Respect rides. They do not respect you. ***
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Monday, August 23, 2021 8:02 PM

It appears TTD is not the only coaster experiencing some significant issues right now

https://www.vice.com/en/article/akg8mk/japan-quickest-roller-coaste...CE_Twitter

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Monday, August 23, 2021 8:37 PM

I can see the investigation coming to a lot of different conclusions...

1) The wrong bolts were used. Although this isn't a "structural" piece of the train, it's important that it stays attached. Maybe the bolts used could not handle the constant vibration throughout the course of a season and one or both of them failed.

2.) The bolts were not replaced at a high enough cadence - again because they were thought to be less critical since they weren't structural or load bearing.

3.) The tightness/integrity of these bolts was not checked at a short enough interval.

I'm sort of envisioning the failure of one bolt for whatever reason - whether it loosened up, sheared off, whatever. With only one bolt in place, the piece was able to dangle down, catch the track, and tear it off the rest of the way and send it flying. Should one properly installed bolt have held the piece in proper position or is that an unreasonable expectation? Should the system have had three bolts, allowing for any one to fail, but the piece to remain positioned properly? Did Cedar Point fail at simply inspecting the torque of these over long periods of time? Did Intamin fail to prescribe inspection of this component at a short enough interval? Lots of questions. I think ultimately, there's going to be some pretty simple and inexpensive things that can be done to make sure it never happens again. But I'm not sure whether the blame would be on daily maintenance, offseason maintenance, purchasing the wrong replacement parts, Intamin, or just really bad luck sh!^ happens kind of thing.

Last edited by MDOmnis, Monday, August 23, 2021 8:38 PM

-Matt

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Monday, August 23, 2021 8:57 PM
Kevinj's avatar

RideMan said:

I suspect that what was meant was that the bolts failed, with half the bolt still in the train and half the bolt...now missing.

That was my interpretation as well. What was found by the worker (in the body-cam video) was half of one of the bolts, with the other half of the bolts still inside the train.

It would seem that the picture shared where the guy supposedly had this L-Shaped bracket in hand was legit. I guess he had a change of heart and turned it in.

Last edited by Kevinj, Monday, August 23, 2021 9:21 PM

Promoter of fog.

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Monday, August 23, 2021 9:43 PM

I found this old photo of a car from the green dragster train which appears to show an angled bracket at the back of a train car as described during the press conference. Not sure if this is "it" or not, but might at least give an idea as to the size of what could have come off the back of a Dragster train. Shiny bracket attached to wheel on bottom right corner.

https://rcdb.com/1896.htm#p=5922

Last edited by Steve4Hockey, Monday, August 23, 2021 9:46 PM

Mechanical Engineer: Dont mess with us, we design your coasters.

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Monday, August 23, 2021 10:07 PM

I don't believe what you're pointing out in that picture is the piece in question. We'd likely need a shot of the underbelly of the train to see where this piece was mounted.


-Matt

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Monday, August 23, 2021 11:31 PM

cdrptrks- The one accident you mention where someone died was determined to be a complete fluke and not a ride malfunction. The other accidents happened on the ride and none of them resulted in brains showing through skull. And this accident in question the person wasn’t even on the ride. Those last two points a HUGE differences between this and other examples. And the more I read about this ordeal, the more it’s pure dumb luck only one person was struck by the projectile.


ROUNDABOUND.

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Monday, August 23, 2021 11:57 PM

It's equally dumb luck, Shane, that anyone was struck at all.

Steve4Hockey, I agree with Matt, that isn't the bracket we're looking for. What you're seeing there is the bracket for that static drain, the little black wiper that hangs down behind the wheel and rubs against the track. First of all it's in the wrong place, second that isn't the back car of the green train...notice the presence of the hitch bearing instead of a back bumper as you see on the blue train in the same photo.

These signal flags...there are two on each train, one on the lead car, and one on the back car. I presume that Dragster follows convention and puts one on the left and one on the right, so the system can detect whether it is looking at the front of the train or the back of the train by which switch gets activated. The flags are used during the launch to monitor the progress of the train so that the brake fins on the launch track can be reset as the train goes by, and they are used throughout the ride to check the train into and out of each safety block.

--Dave Althoff, Jr.



/X\ *** Respect rides. They do not respect you. ***
/XXX\ /X\ /X\_ _ /X\__ _ _____
/XXXXX\ /XXX\ /XXXX\_ /X\ /XXXXX\ /X\ /XXXXX
_/XXXXXXX\_/XXXXX\_/XXXXXXX\_/XXX\_/XXXXXXX\__/XXX\__/XXXXXX

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Tuesday, August 24, 2021 2:11 AM

I don’t totally understand the damage to the “brake bracket area,” but I suppose it was good guests and operators worked together to stop the ride before the next train was dispatched.

I wonder if the park suspected this proximate cause as early as Sunday, between the early social media rumor of the responsible metal object and the park’s self-indicting statement that the object came from the ride.

I pray the victim can find some good fortune at this point. That said, I’m also feeling increasingly annoyed by the obsessive media coverage that seems intent on painting this ride and the entire park as a death trap.

Last edited by Top Thrill 182, Tuesday, August 24, 2021 2:26 AM

Thrills Around the Corner!

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