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NEWS: Man dies after falling off La Qua's 'Spinning Coaster'


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From the Japan Times:

 

Safety flaws found in Dome ride

Compiled from Kyodo, Bloomberg

 

Tokyo Dome Corp. was searched Tuesday by police over a fatal accident Sunday in which a 34-year-old man fell to his death from an amusement park ride.

 

The operator of Tokyo Dome City Attractions in Bunkyo Ward is the target of a police probe that started Tuesday, company spokesman Yasuhiro Nakano said.

 

Fumiaki Kuranouchi was on the Spinning Coaster Maihime, a roller coaster with revolving cars, when he fell from a height of 7 to 8 meters at around 12:40 p.m. Sunday. The ride reaches a speed of 39.6 kph along a 305-meter-long track.

 

Investigative sources said the amusement park operator is suspected of professional negligence resulting in the man's death after police found safety flaws in the ride's operating manual.

 

There were no specific instructions in the manual about confirming that the safety bar for each passenger is fastened before starting the ride, the sources said, adding that the confirmation steps had only been taught "verbally" by one worker to another, including part-time employees.

 

According to company sources, the manual doesn't require workers to physically check that all safety bars are secured.

 

One former part-timer involved in operating the ride revealed that she had often confirmed the position of the safety bars "just by looking."

 

The police are also probing whether the company provided adequate safety training to its workers.

 

The amusement park was involved in another moving-ride accident last May, when a nylon part weighing about 100 grams fell about 4.5 meters and slightly injured a park employee in the back, the Bunkyo Ward Office said.

 

Given Sunday's fatal accident, ward officials urged Tokyo Dome under the Building Standards Law to stop running the Spinning Coaster Maihime, which repeats spins and turns on a short track, and investigate what caused the accident.

 

Later in the day, Tokyo Dome President Shinji Kushiro offered an apology for the fatal accident.

 

"We offer our sincere apology," he told a news conference. "We will work to pin down the cause of the accident and quickly take steps to ensure safety. We are fully cooperating with the police investigation."

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Still doesn't tell us a whole lot about the cause of the accident other than that the park has some issues with their operations procedures. I think we've assumed that the restraints were lowered but no where that I have seen does it actually state that was the case. Mauer may or may not be off the hook ......

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There were no specific instructions in the manual about confirming that the safety bar for each passenger is fastened before starting the ride, the sources said, adding that the confirmation steps had only been taught "verbally" by one worker to another, including part-time employees.

 

Takes Maurer Söhne off the hook. Thank you for sharing.

 

I'm assuming this refers to La Qua's ride operation manual and not Maurer's manual. Otherwise Maurer would be on the hook.

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Ya know, I had heard stories about how efficient, and strict, the Japanese were about their safety policies, and, I have to admit that they really lived up to that, on EVERY ride I've been on in Japan. They are VERY safety conscious and very efficient at how they go about it.

 

Of course, this seems to have become a "National" policy, after the incident at Expoland.

 

I wouldn't be surprised if we never see that mouse run at LaQua again.

 

 

JJ

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