Slingshot ride cable snaps during ride

I’ve never ridden one of these, but have always wanted to.  I’m surprised at this news because this is the second ride in the last month that I’ve seen in the news having a snapped cable.  The last one snapped while it was on the ground so no one was injured, but this one snapped while it was in motion causing it to bounce over into a tower and breaking one passengers leg.  They’re lucky it broke at the bottom of its’ bounce because that used up most of it’s momentum.  If it had snapped at the top, gravity would have made it swing much faster.  Below is the video of the accident.

 

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Smiler coaster crashes at Alton Towers

The smiler roller coaster had some kind of a problem that involved a car train loaded with passengers to collide with a stationary empty car.  Four were seriously injured and were picked up by helicopters to take them to the hospital.

From the sound of it, the computer stopped the second train, then was overridden.  (I say this because witnesses reported that the train stopped where passengers could have been offloaded.  This sounds like what normally happens when the computer senses something is wrong and stops the train.)  For it to have started moving again, the operator would have to tell it to go and then it collided with the other car that was in the way.  It’ll be a while before they say what happened officially, but that’s my guess.

More information is available from the BBC at http://www.bbc.com/news/uk-32980354

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Busch Gardens Tampa announces closure of Gwazi

Busch Gardens Tampa has announced the upcoming closure of their dueling wooden roller Gwazi.  February 1st, 2015 is the last day to ride Gwazi.  They haven’t announced yet any details as to what they are going to do in that area of the park.

It opened in 1999, and I rode it for the first time in 2000.  While not my favorite coaster since I prefer steel coasters, I’m still going to hate to see it go after 15 years in the park.

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