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the big holes at the back of wave pools


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You know the traditional wavepool, with about 8 or 10 chambers behind the wall with air blasting down on the top to squeeze the water out the holes - (not the much bigger toilet-flushing system). Well the holes are quite big, they have vertical bars though. Anyway, I was in wavepool last week and anyone would get whislted at for going to close to the back wall.. what would happen if you put your foot near the hole? Would you get sucked in? They look really scary.

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I've always wondered the same thing! And call me crazy, but I'm scared to go in the back of wave pools cause I have a phobia I'll get sucked into the machine and die, even though that wouldn't happen. I know at Schlitterbahn Galveston (Wasserfest) They have a lazy river that has waves, and sometimes I would be relaxing on my raft than I'd be sucked towards the metal bars and be pretty much stuck to the wall til' I would have enough strength the move.

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How Wave Pools Work

 

Pretty solid article on these things, I've always wondered this myself but never thought to look it up.

 

In this system, the water is constantly circulating. It moves from the deep end of the pool, out to the canal, around to the pumping system and back into the deep end of the pool.

 

Sounds like the pumps are at the very bottom, so unless your 8 feet down, I don't think you'd get sucked in.

 

The return canal is fenced off so swimmers will never be exposed to the pumping mechanism.

 

And even if you were at the very bottom, you can see that it says those cages will never be exposed to the pumping mechanism. How well those return canals are fenced off is probably the responsibility of park maintenance. Seems a flawless design, I've never heard anyone getting caught in one of those things and losing their legs

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How Wave Pools Work

 

Pretty solid article on these things, I've always wondered this myself but never thought to look it up.

 

In this system, the water is constantly circulating. It moves from the deep end of the pool, out to the canal, around to the pumping system and back into the deep end of the pool.

 

Sounds like the pumps are at the very bottom, so unless your 8 feet down, I don't think you'd get sucked in.

 

The return canal is fenced off so swimmers will never be exposed to the pumping mechanism.

 

And even if you were at the very bottom, you can see that it says those cages will never be exposed to the pumping mechanism. How well those return canals are fenced off is probably the responsibility of park maintenance. Seems a flawless design, I've never heard anyone getting caught in one of those things and losing their legs

 

ah yes I think the type of system you put up there isn't the same as the older system I'm on about, that's the huge flushing-tanks type one like at sixflags typhoon lagoon or what ever it's called.

 

I think the system I'm on about had been around in the mid 80s and uses air power instead.

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I remember Dorneypark's wave pool back in the 80's used large baffles attached to a crank mechanism to move the baffles back and forth to create waves. I don't know if it still uses the baffle system, or they upgraded to a different kind of system. The system in the "How Wavepools Work" seems to use a system that pumps water up into a holding tank above the water line, and then dump them into the pool. Other systems use air pressure to push the water out and then in, creating waves.

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Yes. You can be seriously hurt with that type of system. I believe some deaths have been reported.

 

Especially if the pool does NOT have other drains/filters to get water from all over the pool. With these type of systems and the high 'suckage' of water can make a person 'stick' to the grate and can be very hard for a lifeguard to save if there is not an emergency stop. Older systems only have one or two emergency stop buttons - some could be away from the guard stands or pump room. For example, our emergency stop buttons for our waterslides were about 30ft away from the runouts.

 

Just keep your distance and don't cross the ropes and you'll be fine.

 

EDIT: http://www.associatedcontent.com/article/302384/6yearold_girl_survives_being_disemboweled_pg2.html Thankful this kid survived.

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Yes. You can be seriously hurt with that type of system. I believe some deaths have been reported.

 

Especially if the pool does NOT have other drains/filters to get water from all over the pool. With these type of systems and the high 'suckage' of water can make a person 'stick' to the grate and can be very hard for a lifeguard to save if there is not an emergency stop. Older systems only have one or two emergency stop buttons - some could be away from the guard stands or pump room. For example, our emergency stop buttons for our waterslides were about 30ft away from the runouts.

 

yeah lucky I think the control box was right near the back of the pool

 

 

Just keep your distance and don't cross the ropes and you'll be fine.

 

yeah, well that's the funny thing, There was no rope at all, you could only go down the deep end if you were on a big rubber ring, god knows what would happen if you fell off near one of the grates! only the occasional whistle from a lifeguard if you got too close.

 

^^^

"when a "child's buttocks cover the drain opening, the resulting suction force can eviscerate the child through the ruptured rectum"

if that's how i picture it - uuuuh!

 

 

The way I see it, I think there could be high suction yes. looking at this diagram I found..

what goes out, must have to go back in again (the water that is)

 

and here's a how scary grateless holes look

http://www.poolrepair.com/images/archive/wavepool.jpg

image is a little too large, check it out the big holes don't even have grate/bars.. there is a saftey rope though. I think I might have nightmares tonight of getting sucked into the machine

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Just keep your distance and don't cross the ropes and you'll be fine.

 

yeah, well that's the funny thing, There was no rope at all, you could only go down the deep end if you were on a big rubber ring, god knows what would happen if you fell off near one of the grates! only the occasional whistle from a lifeguard if you got too close.

Now that may be a legal issue.

 

I know in the state of Colorado to have a pool open you MUST have a buoy rope separating the shallow end from the deep end if it is at X number of feet (6 I believe). I do believe this may vary state to state, and with the locations (apartment complexes, hotel pools, etc.)

 

One of my earliest memories of a lifeguard saving a kid was at a small water park called Crystal Rapids in Loveland, CO. With only a wave pool, three slides, and a kids play area it wasn't a ton. But a guard went down toward the wave pool drains to grab a kid. Scary stuff.

 

You can do a few more google searching and find a handful of deaths related to drains.

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A few years ago, I thought I remember a story of a young boy being found inside the pump system of a wave pool after getting pulled in and drowing. I want to say it was in a different country. But I'm not sure.

 

Wave pools are scary.

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You're talking about two different things. The wave chambers (caissons) may look scary, but they can't pin you down there, nor can they disembowel you. Any water they suck in ends up being blown right back out again; there's nowhere else for it to go.

 

Pool drains are another thing entirely, and are tied to the pumps feeding the filtration system or in some cases to the pumps feeding the waterslides. Older drains and filtration systems unfortunately have been tied to some of the tragic cases that have been cited above.

 

So I wouldn't worry too much about the consequences of getting too close to the back wall grates of a pneumatic (forced-air) wave pool, but I still would respect the park's rules of staying away. If nothing else, during a wave cycle you're likely to get repeatedly slammed up against the back wall if you get too close, and that would be uncomfortable.

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I've always wondered why they had those ropes near the back of the wave pools. Every year they seemed to be pushed back further outwards -- almost halfway as I remember here at Waterworld one year. Speaking of Waterworld, I've always wondered about their other wave pool "Thunder Bay" since, unlike traditional wave pools, it sends out one large wave every so often instead of a continuous cycle like most.

 

 

I think I might have nightmares tonight of getting sucked into the machine

Then you better not see the new Final Destination movie coming out later this summer. Based on rumors, and the few seconds of the "pool scene" in the trailer, it looks like there will be something just like this in the movie (exaggerated, of course).

 

 

A few years ago, I thought I remember a story of a young boy being found inside the pump system of a wave pool after getting pulled in and drowing. I want to say it was in a different country. But I'm not sure.

 

Wave pools are scary.

I remember that too. I think it was in Russia.

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  • 3 years later...

I have something to say on this, I had my leg sucked in to a pneumatic wave machine at Windsor because they didnt rope it off and you was able to sit on the ledge just above it. This is only swimming pool I know u can be near the running wave machine. If u stand too close to the grill it will pull your leg in, if u have hold of the side you should be OK with a pneumatic machine. When the machine starts to push out the water you can safely remove your leg. I was never hurt by it.

 

Windsor had 1.8 Meter Deep Pool, Bedford 1.4 and this wasnt powerful at all. My local wave pool is 1.8 M deep but they rope it off during waves. Swindon is 1.9 M deep and has a life guard telling people to stay away. The wave machine at swindon works by compressing the chambers and pushing out the water

 

Deeper the Pool more powerful the wave machine current will be.

 

I have been looking in to these holes recently on a private swimming session with my camera its like a little room with loads of floats and stuff stuck in there as well as a large pipe in there.

 

Wave Machine Chambers are no way powerful as pool drains ie wont disembow you it can pin u against the bars if u was underwater with it going until it pushes out then u would be pushed away and then pulled back and slamed against the bars if u did not get out of the current.

 

Many people who probley saw my wave chamber videos when I kept poking my camera while the machine is off in there to see what is inside these. Probley became scared I expect. I have been known to leave camera filming inside these chambers during a cycle as I have permission to do this. I have also experiement with the current by tying something that can be seen to bars and watch how it is pushed and pulled back hoping to do this with windows vista cd as my protest against windows.

 

I have also been inside a pool filteration plant room on a tour which I found very interesting and shown how various parts of the pool worked. Pool Drains (Unsafe ones) are known to pin u to the drains and will disembow.

 

Many people I know has swam inside a Wave Machine Caissons as they all told me about it at this swimming club including the manager.

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and here's a how scary grateless holes look

http://www.poolrepair.com/images/archive/wavepool.jpg

image is a little too large, check it out the big holes don't even have grate/bars.. there is a saftey rope though. I think I might have nightmares tonight of getting sucked into the machine

 

 

If you look to side you will see grate leaning against the wall. These were removed for maintence so they do have grates.

In order for people to get in they have to remove the grilles. They are not easily seen but they are there.

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I don't think I ever mentioned this, but once on a school trip at an indoor wave pool (late 80s), I got rather close to the grill at the back of the pool and almost got sucked in - had a few flashbacks as to what could have happened on that one.

 

I never swam in the deep end at the age I 1st visited the wave pool but was very interested in the wave machine since then and I remember asking questions about it's powerfulness so I was aware that people can be sucked towards the wave machine. My pool will not start the wave machine until they lay down the ropes so technically if I want to put my camera in there it has to be done before they lay down the rope and left in there during a cycle.

 

One time and it is very dangerous to do but if you play by the wave machine rules you should be OK. Wave machine rules not to fight the current and swim away when it is taking in water or you will be pulled back. I did swim down to the bars from the side with the machine going and was able to see what goes on inside the caissons or Chambers. Bearing in mind keeping arms streight while holding on the bars resisting the current is a must as the current is quite strong. When finished looking I waited for it to push out the water and swam away. At this swimming pool is it can be awkward as kids are sitting on the ledge above you. Always best to go from the sides where the current is not that strong compared to the middle.

 

In the Powerful wave making chambers you can see the water rise and lower at a fast speed were in the ones that are not powerful the water rises and lower slower.

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I appreciate the effort but your videos don't really show much clearly I'm afraid :\

 

In what way?

 

It would be very great if u actually gave a reasons why because as that answer you have given is not clear enough to me either as it means very little to me. People who avoid streight answers I can find quite annoying especially work colleagues.

Have u looked through the post and news articles relating to pool drains deaths.

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  • 2 months later...

Having worked at a six flags water park i can say that the caissons are in no way dangerous, in fact I've swam down to them many times while the machine was running just for the thrill of be thrown back and forth against the grates (call me crazy). The rope is really just so no one bumps into the side of the pool to hard and hurts themselves.

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^It probably isn't dangerous if you know what you are doing... but perhaps people panic and that is why they drown. I can imagine a situation where somebody gets pulled against the grate and then thinks "I'm trapped, better panic and struggle!"

 

That sad truth is there are probably a lot of people in wave pools who have no business being in wave pools, especially in the deep end. I feel like past a certain point there is an amount of swimming proficiency expected from the guests, and people do not realize that.

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Having worked at a six flags water park i can say that the caissons are in no way dangerous, in fact I've swam down to them many times while the machine was running just for the thrill of be thrown back and forth against the grates (call me crazy). The rope is really just so no one bumps into the side of the pool to hard and hurts themselves.

...or stupid.

 

Keep striving. That Darwin Award is within reach!

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