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Speculation and media beat ups - Thunder River Rapids incident


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I also tend to agree, which is why I found the immediate appearance of the AWU rep in the media to be a bit on-the-nose.

I think if anyone believes we will find a singular cause for this incident they are dreaming.  It's rare for a single cause to lead to something like this, instead you'll find a combination of unlikely factors creates a highly unlikely outcome.  Singular cause a pump failure?  No, because the pump will have failed before without incident.  Singular cause a sensor failure?  It would be highly irresponsible to design a ride system that could not account for a single sensor failure.  Staff member failing to correctly discharge their duties?  For the most part ride systems are designed to account for an operator becoming incapacitated.

That of course says nothing for situations that have never been conceived before, but there are some elements that I can only assume have been.  For example, I'd have said;

  • Likelihood of risk to life in the event of a pump failure; I'd have said this one was highly unlikely.
  • Likelihood of risk of fatal drowning in the event of immersion in water channel; high.
  • Likelihood of risk of fatal injury in the event of patron separation from raft on conveyor lift; high.
  • Likelihood of risk of raft roll-over in the event of collision with another raft; low.
  • Likelihood of risk of raft roll-over in the event of collision with object fouling water channel; moderate.

Now, start to combine a couple of those lower risks and you have some scenarios that perhaps you wouldn't ordinarily consider.  For example; what if you had a pump failure, which caused a collision with another raft causing a roll-over in the vicinity of the conveyor lift?  All of a sudden your highly unlikely risk is combined with a low risk and a high risk.  That's not to say you couldn't manage most or all of these risks to a level that you're comfortable with (since it's not practical to completely remove them in many cases).

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And what about those whose plans for the day that are ruined because of it? And not really, the exact same principle applies... I hope when there is another accident on a road you decide not to drive

Oh please they demand to be always in the limelight, even when the issue was settled and the person convicted... They STILL insist on riding on the coattails of the death of their kid for a continuing

There has been a lot more moderating going on, 2 members have been suspended and we've deleted a butt ton of posts.  But as you can imagine it is hard to keep up with all the replies, I would say if y

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3 minutes ago, webslave said:

For example; what if you had a pump failure, which caused a collision with another raft causing a roll-over in the vicinity of the conveyor lift? 

I've read numerous suggestions now as well that when the failed pump reactivated, it may have caused a huge gush of water to have come through the conveyor belt end, which could have very well even what launched the raft up onto the empty one and (with its rear end stuck in the conveyor belt at the time) consequently tipped it up. 

Once again, all media speculation. But I thought this to be a plausible explanation.  

I guess we are all trying to play the scenario out in our head with different possibilities, just to try and piece together exactly what made it physically occur in the first place.

I don't want this to sound the wrong way and I admit that although it will likely never happen, but I confess that a small curious part of me wants to see the CCTV footage just to see the physics of HOW it happened. I'm still trying to get my head around it. But the rest of me doesn't, because I don't want to see any of the graphic outcome :(

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10 minutes ago, Theme Park Girl said:

I've read numerous suggestions now as well that when the failed pump reactivated, it may have caused a huge gush of water to have come through the conveyor belt end, which could have very well even what launched the raft up onto the empty one and (with its rear end stuck in the conveyor belt at the time) consequently tipped it up. 

Once again, all media speculation. But I thought this to be a plausible explanation.  

I guess we are all trying to play the scenario out in our head with different possibilities, just to try and piece together exactly what made it physically occur in the first place.

I don't want this to sound the wrong way and I admit that although it will likely never happen, but I confess that a small curious part of me wants to see the CCTV footage just to see the physics of HOW it happened. I'm still trying to get my head around it. But the rest of me doesn't, because I don't want to see any of the graphic outcome :(

as much as seeing the CCTV footage would help us understand this incident better. those who have seen the footage have said they wish to never see it again if they do not have too.

here's hopeing the CCTV footage never find its way into the public and on youtube etc as many other theme park incidents have in the past

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49 minutes ago, Theme Park Girl said:

I've read numerous suggestions now as well that when the failed pump reactivated, it may have caused a huge gush of water to have come through the conveyor belt end, which could have very well even what launched the raft up onto the empty one and (with its rear end stuck in the conveyor belt at the time) consequently tipped it up. 

Once again, all media speculation. But I thought this to be a plausible explanation.  

I find that implausible for a couple of reasons:

  1. I highly doubt the pump would be able to start again of it's own accord. It would have required someone to take some sort of action. If this is the case, I would like to think that the ride would not have had people on it.
  2. depending on which pump it was (there are two) this 'gush' would be unlikely even if it were to have occurred - the first pump - north side of the conveyor contributes most of it's effort towards the ride channel - given it's location and the downward run, little of it would flow toward the conveyor, as there are several baffles, guards and rails in the way (see below). The second pump contributes most of it's flow to the load channel. If this is the one that failed, I would suggest that the water level would have been too low to keep rafts above the guide rails below the water - which would cause frequent bottoming out. Now - i'm aware that the 'front raft' in this incident had done exactly that, but if it had been off for a while, I doubt they'd have been able to operate. If it had momentarily failed, and then restarted, there would be insufficient drain to warrant a 'gush' strong enough to tip over the raft. Again - looking at the picture below you can see that most of any 'force' provided by the pump outlets isn't directed in such a way as to be 'focussed' on the conveyor exit. All of the structure in the area would dampen any impact a surging pump would have.
  3. If the raft was 'caught' in the conveyor', a sudden gush of water would have the opposite effect - instead of tipping it, it would have righted it \ pushed it out of the conveyor. Remember too that these rafts are built to stay upright through the turbulent waters of the ride. The tube (not the fibreglass seating area) provides the flotation, and remember that these things are built to house 6 adults plus baggage, meaning their weight capacity above the raft itself should be more than 700kg. Given there were two children on board, it would be safe to assume it had no more than about 500kg onboard - so even if another 200kg of water hit and flowed into the raft, it should still have floated. Conversely, 200kg of water would be unlikely to have enough force to tip the raft over, given many of these rides load 'in channel' without causing serious 'rocking'.
  4. Wonderland's model is obviously different. I believe that Intamin were the manufacturer of the WS model. I don't know what the specs are of the pumps, and how they compare, but the stationhouse setup and flume size is relatively similar. Assuming that the pumps are similar in size, I doubt the ride could have operated with one pump shut down. Wonderland had problems with the age of its pumps in its last 4 years, and the ride could not operate if one was completely out of service.

I am firmly of the belief that it is the mechanical action of the conveyor itself that has pushed the back end of the raft under, lifting the front end and causing a capsize. Just my 87 cents.

 

trr pumps.png

Edited by AlexB
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Thanks @AlexB. Definitely more food for thought. 

16 minutes ago, JeffreyMoore said:

was not meaning to upset you in what i said sorry

It's ok. Not upset. Just want to clarify what I said earlier, as I don't want anyone to think I want to see the CCTV for reasons other than getting my head around the chain of events that led to something of this scale taking place. I admit that I'm still struggling to accept how exactly of this magnitude happened, especially for what I've known for 30 years to be a harmless family ride, also knowing that those two small kids managed to escape at what would have even an extremely crucial time. 

The mind just boggles :(

Edited by Theme Park Girl
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17 minutes ago, AlexB said:
  1. Wonderland's model is obviously different. I believe that Intamin were the manufacturer of the WS model. I don't know what the specs are of the pumps, and how they compare, but the stationhouse setup and flume size is relatively similar. Assuming that the pumps are similar in size, I doubt the ride could have operated with one pump shut down. Wonderland had problems with the age of its pumps in its last 4 years, and the ride could not operate if one was completely out of service.

Just on that, I recall reading somewhere on the internet an in-depth post about the operation and condition of the pumps at WS, particularly the issues with the pump casings becoming porous throughout their life span and allowing the windings on the pumps to become wet.  As I recall from the post this required a pump maintainer to come and crane the pumps out of their casings to dry out.

If I remember correctly it also detailed how due to the parlous state of the pumps they frequently ran one pump down and had techs had been sent into the channel to board up the sides of the guide channel to direct more of the flow through there, and remove obstruction elements on the bottom of the channel to cope with the lower flow.

Would anyone know whether this post still exists?  It was an interesting read.

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Maybe the raft in the incident was the first one through after a test cycle or two, in relation to the problems they had even having that morning. That might have possibly explained why the raft in front was already empty, as the ones ahead of it likely were as well.

Alternatively, maybe it somehow rolled back a bit after the previous passengers had already disembarked (maybe due to the pump failure) and then subsequently got stuck. 

Once again, all pure speculation on my part and open to alternative suggestions.  

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http://finance.nine.com.au/2016/11/02/08/51/arden-leisure-boss-threatened-over-dreamworld-deaths

 

Ms Thomas has been threatened on social media and holds fears for her family’s safety after photos of her Sydney apartment and son’s school were published in the media.

 

And I bet the media couldn't care less as it would stop a great story being published...

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^ Yep, the more they can stir up and pretend like it's just a natural progression of events, the more hits they'll get on their articles.

7 hours ago, Bussy said:

Firstly the ride operators should've been aware that the first raft had stopped where it was and that the lift was still moving and stopped the ride, there are at least two operators who should've picked up on this.

Yeah this was my first thought... surely in an ideal situation ride operators should constantly be scanning the station for abnormal occurrences, but I can imagine it would be easy to become distracted, especially when a seemingly harmless family ride hasn't had an accident for it's 30 years of operation. 

Edited by MARK28
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7 hours ago, Theme Park Girl said:

http://www.goldcoastbulletin.com.au/news/dreamworld-founder-ive-lost-a-lot-of-tears-over-the-terrible-accident/news-story/b0b462719bb389e530719000d959f788

Dreamworld founder John Longhurst is reported to have very distraught over the incident :( This article also gives a lot of insight to the history of the park. Worth a read. 

Referring to these sentences:

Quote

Mr Longhurst made his way through the long grass to speak to the owner, who was living in an old house at a corner of the 80ha property.

A house sign, “Hollywood’’, sealed his decision to buy.

I read on DW's website recently that the Hollywood House is still in tact in DW. It is in Gold Rush Country (according to DW's website) but I don't know which building in that area it is? Do you know (or anyone else) know which building it is?

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The site that Dreamworld now occupies once belonged to John and Sarah Williamson, some English cattle raising family who in 1874 decided to name their house Hollywood Cottage, and thus placing this name on a hardwood beam, which was then placed above their front door. Their original cottage still stands intact on Dreamworld grounds, as part of Gold Rush Country, where the descendants of the Williamson’s stayed on until 1989.  

 When DW first opened gold rush the blacksmith in gold rush was the guy that lived in the house.  The dude and I believe his wife lived in the house for 3 years after Gold Rush was opened.  The house remains and there is a photo floating around somewhere on parkz.

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I did here that story of the original owners of the land did continue to live there while DW was in its early years and the property still remains. As the house is in Gold Rush Country that might put a spanner in the works of flattening Gold Rush Country obviously it remains standing as DW don't wish to demolish as if they were going to it would of been done by now so they may not completely demolish Gold Rush for that reason. 

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1 hour ago, Ashley said:

I did here that story of the original owners of the land did continue to live there while DW was in its early years and the property still remains. As the house is in Gold Rush Country that might put a spanner in the works of flattening Gold Rush Country obviously it remains standing as DW don't wish to demolish as if they were going to it would of been done by now so they may not completely demolish Gold Rush for that reason. 

Is this the house you're referring to? 

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