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More bad press for Six Flags.....or not?


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In my opinion, Six Flags did the right thing here as bad as it might sound.

 

Basically, they would not let a veteran ride because he had 2 prostetic(sp) legs and it was against there rules. The rule states that a person must have at least 1 functioning leg and arm to ride. Now....Does anybody remember what happened at Darien lake about 5 years ago? Same situation, only they let him ride and it did not turn out so well.

 

Here is the news story about the incident....

 

http://www.theblaze.com/stories/2014/03/15/what-six-flags-allegedly-did-to-a-veteran-reduced-him-to-tears-in-front-of-his-daughter/

 

Thoughts?

Edited by thrillrider
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People need to understand that not everything is designed to suit every body type. Amusement restraints are designed with specific body physics, and when you change that problems happen.

 

There are specific reasons for every safety rule that exists regarding a ride, this rule was enhanced by the Darien Lake incident. Also the public doesn't seem to understand that the rules are generally made by recommendations by the manufacturers, government authorities, and insurance companies.

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Six Flags did make the right move. Prosthetics come in all shapes and sizes (lengths and widths) depending on the person's body. A lot of rides, specifically ones with just lap bars, puts most of the pressure on your upper thighs to hold you in. That can be very dangerous with someone with 2 prosthetics. My mom has been an amputee as of 2011 when she lost her right leg to cancer so I know how frustrated one can get by not being able to participate in certain activities. It's very difficult to watch and I feel horrible for handicapped people who are denied from certain activities, even if it is for the best to keep them safe.

 

However, this was for the rider's safety I understand what the park did. I saw some people boycotting Six Flags on FB saying that they should offer a full refund because he didn't know about the policy. It would be a nice gesture for Six Flags to do so but Six Flags does have that policy posted on both their website and parks I believe.

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I think that most peoples on this site will understand Six Flags' reasons behind their decision (except maybe the refund part) because obviously 6F wants peoples to have fun at their parks and wouldn't deny someone from a ride for nothing. It was for his safety. However, looking a the comments on the article, most of the GP seems to disagree with the park and would be ready to sue Six Flags for that. So it might be some bad pub. for the park, but not that much.

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I have no doubt that a good portion of the GP will view this as negative press, but the signs at the ride entrance and station were neglected and the decision comes purely in the best interest of the safety of the rider. People point to the fact that he's done military service so "the least you could do is award him one roller coaster ride," but there are certain risks you accept in going into the armed forces, and exclusion from certain activities due to amputation is a big one of them.

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Generally policy is policy and I think it would not be secure for him to ride most coasters. All lapbars only coasters come to mind or coasters were the legs dangle free like inverted coasters. I think he could ride OTSR coasters with a closed floor like for example a B&M Sitdown as he still has his arms and shoulders - but this cannot be decided by the attendant at the ride - this needs to be done by a qualified engineer before visiting a park.

 

Generally I hope this will not lead to guys who will read you all kinds of rules and restrictions at entry and make the line to get into a park go around the block...

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It would be rather sad, yet ironic, if this guy lost his legs and survived a war, only to be killed on a roller coaster because his condition wouldn't allow him to be restrained properly.

 

While I feel sorry for this gentleman for what happened to him, he really wasn't thinking clearly.

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This will blow over, just give it a week to settle. Rather have this happen now than in the heat of the busy summer when amusement parks are more on top of people's minds. It's just sad that the fact this man was a Veteran is what put this story in the spotlight as I know many guests in this same situation are denied rides everyday.

 

I'm pretty sick of the excuse of "I didn't see any signs" many people use when they aren't allowed to do what they want. If the sign didn't hit them in the face, or a person wasn't at the door to read off a novel of rules, they will pull this excuse 99% of the time. Six Flags or any park chain for that matter is very well rehearsed in knowing what it takes to notify guests of their rules and park policies, so I really doubt there was nothing telling him in the Fast Pass information, information posted online, in brochures, and at the rides themselves that someone in his situation wouldn't be able to ride. Six Flags was more than gracious to offer a full refund, as there are other rides and attractions he could partake in.

 

I wish that every person in this world could ride every single ride that they want to. However, in the best interest of safety, that simply cannot happen. I wish this Veteran could have the time of his life on every coaster in the world as he has gone through more than any of us can imagine, but in the best interest of his safety, that just can't be. For that I feel terrible, but sometimes that is just how life is.

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Six Flags should've refunded his money, even though they had no lawful reason to but just out of respect and compassion.

Why??? All the rider restrictions for people with disabilities are right here on their website: https://www.sixflags.com/sites/default/files/docs/park/ada-guidelines/ADAGuide_SANA_0.pdf

 

Why should we reward someone for being stupid and not bothering to read the restrictions?

 

I have a child and I check with every park before I go to see what she can and can't ride. You would think that someone with special needs would do the exact same thing. Refunding his money is only insulting the people who actually DID do their research before going to the park. He created a "scene" and used his disability and his story to his advantage. IMO, that sucks.

 

"While I feel sorry for this gentleman for what happened to him, he really wasn't thinking clearly." - Chuck

 

--Robb "I have zero compassion for people who take advantage of a situation, which this guy clearly did." Alvey

Edited by robbalvey
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It's going to be spun into bad press, but they 100% did the right thing in not allowing him to ride.

 

Yep. Bad press is better than a lawsuit. They did the right thing.

 

And "Six Flags Denies Veteran Ride" is still better bad press than "Veteran Killed on Six Flags Ride".

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So, I completely agree with Six Flags on this issue. "Are you able to ride?" signs are everywhere in the park, on the park map, and on the website. It's not the park's fault that he decided not to read them.

 

The article's comments section make Six Flags sound like an evil corporation that hates veterans, but one of the commenters (ModerateRepublican) actually sided with Six Flags and had some good points.

 

That is sad to be sure. Don’t place the blame on Six Flags though, place the blame on the litigious nature of our country and the overabundance of lawyers many of whom see bucks in suing a deep pocket company for any injury that happens at a park.

 

No doubt the ride Six Flags wouldn’t let him get on was a roller coaster or some similar ride where the safety features of the ride, the features that keep you from flying out of your seat depend on the body of the person in the ride.

 

I have a relative whose legs were blown off in Vietnam so I know some of the issues. It’s not clear from the photo if the guy’s legs were gone above or below the knee, and that’s crucial. I don’t know, but “functional leg” may mean that you have a leg below the knee. The primary safety feature that keeps you from flying out of your seat in a roller coaster is the pad that sits firmly just above your knee when they lock you in. If you don’t have a knee, the stress of the ride is going to be transferred to your prosthetic with unknown results.

 

Seriously folks, this has nothing to do with Six Flags discriminating against disabled vets. It has to do with Six Flags not knowing if the guy will fly off the ride and smash head first into a concrete pillar after falling 100 feet while his daughter watched.

 

Please, don’t try to make this some anti-veteran thing.

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While Six Flags is well within their right to do what they've done and I want people to have personal accountability, it would have made good business sense to refund the guy's money.

 

The press this will generate will hurt them to a greater extent than a refund to the occasional dissatisfied customer would.

 

By all means they should not have let him ride if it isn't safe.

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The incident at Darien Lake is a prime example of what can happen in a situation like this. They maybe could have been more forthcoming with a refund, but if you don't meet the criteria, you can't safely ride. Case closed.

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What I don't understand is, how are you going to fly out of a roller coaster just because of a fake leg?!

 

There isn't enough certainty that the prosthetics will stay attached with the forces put on them by the users body and the restraint system. And the legs are a common place to hold a person with. Pretty much anything with a lap bar or seatbelt would be questionable, as well as some other rides with OTSRs that also rely on your legs to support you.

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While Six Flags is well within their right to do what they've done and I want people to have personal accountability, it would have made good business sense to refund the guy's money.

No it doesn't. Six Flags charges everyone admission to enter the park, whether you ride or not. It's been that way since day 1 over fifty years ago. All they are doing now is giving anyone that doesn't ride ammo to request refunds too.

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