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Glenwood Caverns Discussion Thread


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1 hour ago, boldikus said:

Awful.

What's especially wild to me is that during all that time that no one else riding with her noticed either. its clearly operator error, but her parent/guardian/whoever was sitting next to her didn't notice either?

Totally agree. The full fault lies on the ride operators, and I don’t want to victim blame, but I always ensure my kids are buckled up safely by watching them secure themselves before I restrain myself. 

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Such a shame and loss.  This reminds me of the 1987 SFGAdventure Lightnin' Loops fatality.  Launching/starting the ride with rider not restrained.  We still have glorious bright orange lap and shoulder bars (with added "hoops" for SF Arrow coasters, so you can't sit in front of them) as a constant reminder of that one, in addition to increasingly obnoxious load routines.  Restraints on rides like this should be checked twice.  Disney seems to do well with their drop towers.

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Wow. I don't know what you say or do. Clearly someone somewhere messed up, because this should never have happened. It seems to have been very preventable, which make it even more tragic. My thoughts and prayers go out to everyone involved, I just can't imagine what it would be like to be in that position.

As a side note, is the seat belt the only restraint on this ride? I'm not familiar with this ride type, but it seems that it should have had more than just a seat belt?

I don't think it's good to speculate on the future of this ride, this park, or their new Gerstlauer at this point. Doesn't seem like now is the time to talk about that.

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It's frustrating at how easily this could of been avoided. So many people hurt over this, the little girl is gone forever, the family is broken forever and honestly the ride ops and the park have this hanging over their heads too, with what's likely a young adult that made the mistake that now lives with this. It's just tragic, I can't think of any reason anyone would of thought this would happen. I've ridden these types of rides before and the ops were always very good at checking, I can't believe they allowed this to happen.

It's hard to speculate anything will happen in terms of removal/operations, but since it was operator error I think it'll reopen honestly. Similar incidents happened at Alton Towers, SFGAdv and some other parks and when it's operator error rides tend to open up with stricter procedures. I just hope that if it does reopen, it opens up with an age restrict/height restriction that matches the ride a bit more. Clearly the current one allowed too young of riders on that didn't quite understand the safety risks of not using a seatbelt.

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6 hours ago, bert425 said:

Id say there's less than 5% chance this ride ever reopens.

but we shall see. . my condolences to the family (who I'm sure is going to sue the crap out of the park and likely win, and force them into bankruptcy or worse :(

If they dont fail financially, id say theres a good chance it re-opens. Ride of Steel at SFDL had a paraplegic Army veteran thrown from it because of operator error and it re-opened that same season. 

And as others have mentioned, where were the parents in this? My kids are 9 & 11 and I still make sure theyre strapped in before I strap myself in. 

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I just don’t understand how this happens??? Every ride I’ve ever ridden in my life someone has checked my restraint! But like someone said before how do the parents not make sure their 6 year old has a seat belt on for a big ride!! Blame on both!! Makes me sick! 
 

i saw before that Glenwood makes their patrons sign a waiver… sorry not gonna work here… neglect voids all waivers. I’d be shocked if that fancy new Guerslauer gets built now!!! What a shame!!

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5 hours ago, Animal said:

I just don’t understand how this happens??? Every ride I’ve ever ridden in my life someone has checked my restraint!

She put the tag end over her lap. So the ride op came by, pulled on it and felt that it was tight, but didnt look down while he was doing it to see that it was tight because it was buckled underneath her. 

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Whatever ride I'm on with my 2 sons, I always make sure they buckle up as soon as they sit. I thaught them to always rely on themselves first.  Ride operators are usually quite young but well trained.  But you never know.  Very sad.

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9 hours ago, Haymaker said:

If they dont fail financially, id say theres a good chance it re-opens. Ride of Steel at SFDL had a paraplegic Army veteran thrown from it because of operator error and it re-opened that same season. 

And as others have mentioned, where were the parents in this? My kids are 9 & 11 and I still make sure theyre strapped in before I strap myself in. 

I'm guessing the parents were having their own freakout riding that thing. All the more reason operators must be vigilant and/or designs foolproof. So much pain to go around now.

Regarding SFDL, he was told multiple times he could not ride.

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41 minutes ago, bill_s said:

Regarding SFDL, he was told multiple times he could not ride.

Someone finally gave in though. From what ive heard that was a pretty horrific event for all involved, as im sure this was as well. 

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Sooooo, the Post Independent article was updated and is now painting a slightly different picture. I hate that news first mentality, get it out quick and fix it later. Anyway, at this point I'm going to get my hands on the actual report and see what they are really saying.

Edit: Here is the link: https://cdle.colorado.gov/press-releases/media-advisory-division-of-oil-and-public-safety-releases-report-of-findings-on

Edited by ALT2870
Added link to report.
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Pure Tragedy. I won't go as far as the Youtuber Theme Park Crazy to call a Boycott, but to defend this park is OUTLAW. This was a human life loss. A 6 year old life who never had the chance to experience the sweetness of this world. It makes me sick and there is no room for defense. The ride alerted the "operators", what more could you ask for? Total human negligence from those running the ride.  

To outlive your own child....

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Just brutal. The park is going to get sued into oblivion and rightfully so. No amount of money can bring her back or amount to even a fraction of the infinite value of her life, but that is all that is left for the family. They will and should pursue a lawsuit. I do feel sympathy for the ride operator(s) who have to live with the outcome of their decisions here for the rest of their lives. Certainly they didn't anticipate the possibility here, even if they should have, and that will weigh heavy on them for the rest of their lives. Most of all I just feel awful for the family. I have an 11 year old and a pair of twins on the way. I cannot imagine the loss of a child. It is unspeakable. 

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2 hours ago, BABA BOOEY said:

Pure Tragedy. I won't go as far as the Youtuber Theme Park Crazy to call a Boycott, but to defend this park is OUTLAW. This was a human life loss. A 6 year old life who never had the chance to experience the sweetness of this world. It makes me sick and there is no room for defense. The ride alerted the "operators", what more could you ask for? Total human negligence from those running the ride.  

To outlive your own child....

For what it's worth, you can't waiver negligence away. Just as you can't sign your life away and such in the United States. There are limits to what you can sign someone to do in a contract of any kind. I don't think with what we know now that the park will fair well in the lawsuit. Another thing that doesn't cover negligence? Most insurance policies, so this could be a really bad situation for the park. I just can't really say what should happen with this one, it seems like a complete nightmare all around for everyone involved.

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4 minutes ago, BRTeller said:

For what it's worth, you can't waiver negligence away. Just as you can't sign your life away and such in the United States. There are limits to what you can sign someone to do in a contract of any kind. I don't think with what we know now that the park will fair well in the lawsuit. Another thing that doesn't cover negligence? Most insurance policies, so this could be a really bad situation for the park. I just can't really say what should happen with this one, it seems like a complete nightmare all around for everyone involved.

Yes, I am far from a lawyer and work in finance, but when I got my degree I was required to take a number of business law classes and this is clear. Waivers can protect a company from being sued for dangers that can reasonably be expected from using their product/service. A waiver MIGHT be able to even exclude a company from liability for the death of the end user. For example, an ATV rental company may explain, through a waiver, that improper usage of the equipment may lead to death through no fault of the company and the company would therefore not be liable. If, upon review, the equipment was in good shape and the end user used it in a negligent manner that caused their own demise as described as possible in the waiver, a waiver may be held up by a court even in the event of a death.

This is not a case like that. There can be no reasonable expectation of death in an amusement park ride. You cannot have a waiver saying that we may or may not have trained our ride operators up to the proper standards, sign this, and the risk now transfers to you. That's not something that can exist within the bounds of our legal system. Nor can a six year old be found liable to have caused their own death with negligent use of the equipment by any reasonable standard. I don't think that would even hold up if she was an adult. This is 100% on the park from a legal perspective no matter what they had signed.

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Would highly encourage some of the more recent posters to go back and read the full report I linked to.

I'm not saying the park is cleared of all responsibility but the report makes it extremely clear that nearly all the fault lies within the operators. Contributing parties include BOTH the park and the manufacturer more or less due to improper documentation.

If the first opetator had done their job correctly like they were told to by the park, this would have not happened, period. So get a grip and read the report then come back and we can have a discussion, I'm all for it.

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I don't understand this argument.

As far as most people are concerned, "The park is responsible" and "Someone who worked for the park is responsible" are the same statement. Trying to find a discernible difference between those two things seems like semantics and in the court of public opinion, nobody is going to care.

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^ Agreed. And even if we are treating "the park" and "the operators" as separate entities, having read the report I'd diagree that "nearly all" the fault lies with the operators. Of the five causes listed in the report, in my opinion insufficient training/operating procedures significantly contributed to at least three of them. The lack of training/procedures for clearing the ride between cycles, and on the different error codes and how to handle them were both major contributing factors. I get it -- at the end of the day the computer told the operators to look at one specific seatbelt and they still managed to miss the fact that the belt wasn't actually on a person -- but the fact that they didn't understand what the error meant and that their solution was to restart the system and immediately cycle the ride with passengers says quite a lot to me about the training standards and safety culture at the park.

The most fascinating detail of the report to me was that an almost identical incident nearly happened two years ago and was reported to the park, but the email didn't get through because of an error in how the park's ecommerce services were set up. No way to know if that email would have mattered if it had gotten through, but it's chilling to think about the butterfly effect of that error.

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2 hours ago, ALT2870 said:

Would highly encourage some of the more recent posters to go back and read the full report I linked to.

I'm not saying the park is cleared of all responsibility but the report makes it extremely clear that nearly all the fault lies within the operators. Contributing parties include BOTH the park and the manufacturer more or less due to improper documentation.

If the first opetator had done their job correctly like they were told to by the park, this would have not happened, period. So get a grip and read the report then come back and we can have a discussion, I'm all for it.

The park and the operators are not separate from a legal perspective. Workplaces are legally responsible for the actions of their employees during the course of their work. A construction worker does not get sued for faulty work by a customer of a construction company. The construction company gets sued. It is possible for companies to sue their employees for negligence and sometimes that happens, but in the case of low paid wage workers there is little to gain from doing so.

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^Well that also depends on the laws in the state too. For example in some states (like Alabama) if a bartender over serves someone and they drive off and hit and kill someone the victim's family can (and will) sue the drunk person driving, the bar/restaurant that over served them, and the bartender(s) that did the serving. Sure you're going to get the most money by suing the company, but that won't stop a lawyer from including the low wage worker too.

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13 hours ago, CoasterGuy06 said:

^Well that also depends on the laws in the state too. For example in some states (like Alabama) if a bartender over serves someone and they drive off and hit and kill someone the victim's family can (and will) sue the drunk person driving, the bar/restaurant that over served them, and the bartender(s) that did the serving. Sure you're going to get the most money by suing the company, but that won't stop a lawyer from including the low wage worker too.

That is a specific law aimed at a specific issue. You are correct in pointing out that exceptions due exist, but they are specifically legislated for specific reasons. I am not aware of any law that would make a ride operator the specific target of any lawsuit, but then again I have (sadly) never even been to Colorado. I wouldn't know of any specific laws in the state. At the same time, I would be very surprised if one existed. The example you helpfully provided is a clear attempt at righting a social issue in drunk driving. I don't think there is a similar motivating factor that would make specific ride operators at amusement/theme parks liable. Again, I am speculating though.

Furthermore, laws are laws until the justice system says they are not. You can always try to ignore them in the judicial system. Even if there was a law like that, I would expect the family would try to sue the park anyway over the operator. Given that the ride op was probably a low wage worker, there is nothing to gain there. I really don't think a law like we are hypothetically talking about exists, but I say this to point out that it might not even matter if it did. The family would sue the park anyway over the operator and then a judge would need to rule on the constitutionality of the law and then the case. This would lead to a ton of appeals, probably, but it is how it would go. 

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