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Quirks, concerns and flaws with Dreamworld's new Log Ride canopies

70 posts in this topic

I think it's fine given DW's limited funds. They have limited resources during a recovery phase and need to allocate them in the most efficient manner and where they will bring maximum impact - if the engineers give it a tick then why throw more money into it when you could use that money elsewhere. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Oh grasshopper @Locke you have forgotten DW's funds are not so limited anymore with the Ardent selling off the bowling & entertainment division for $160 million.  Dr Gary Weiss, Chairman of Ardent said, "this sale relieves Ardent of the requirement to make significant further investment needed to support this strategy and provides Ardent with increased flexibility to continue the expansion of Main Event and the reinvigoration of Theme parks". 

This change in Ardent’s positions doesn’t included the surplus land plan Ardent is still considering selling.

Going by Ardent’s history it wouldn’t surprise me if Main Events consume most of the new investment opportunities but saying Ardent have limited funds is wrong.

It all comes down to what is Ardent willing to invest in DW.

 

 

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On 26/01/2018 at 5:10 PM, Richard said:

At what point did the article make any claims to have any answers? You say that the article's heart is in the right place, but what heart exactly?

  • Witnessing the pinch points in easy reach, created by those U-shaped brackets and the way they freely rattle up and down.
  • Witnessing staff standing on one foot, leaning over the boat with one hand on the frame and the other on the canopy.
  • Witnessing the difficulty of four riders squeezing through the gaps between the frame and maneuvering over the side braces to lower themselves into the seats.
  • Witnessing that bar at neck height for most adult male riders.

Parkz has never faulted a park for taking the time to do something properly.

You're right - there were no answers given. I was simply stating that I didn't claim to have the answers either.

The 'heart' was in the right place in that we want the park to do better than this. As I pointed out numerous times, this clearly wasn't the 'best' solution - but one thing the article has ignored is whether it was 'satisfactory' - and by that I mean satisfactory for the mischief it is trying to cure, not whether it rattles.

Sure, there are 'pinch points' with the brackets, but with no machine force behind them, it's nigh-on impossible that anyone sticking their finger into them is going to receive an injury during the ride - by nature of the fact that it's free-moving. There is no force behind it that will force the brackets closed onto someone's finger. (And clearly the operator is going to see a finger in a bracket before opening it) - on splashdown is the highest risk of injury in this situation, and the risk would be minimal (and far better than someone falling out and drowning). Like I said, if this risk appears more real and less fanciful as they continue operations, i'm sure we'll see a modification to prevent \ guard against this issue.

Staff performing loading and unloading procedures twist, bend, lean and balance in all matter of positions. The biggest risk here needs the operator of the ride to fuck up and lower the log when they aren't supposed to. We still have no confirmation on whether TPG's video shows the loader returning to a control panel to give the all clear (but it does certainly look like it). Even if there is no loader 'all clear' button, the procedures they would operate under would be unlikely to result in the log being lowered as the article suggests.

The only time i've ever seen these logs loaded with four is when there are small kids involved. Its a fair point that these probably do make loading a little slower, but I don't see anyone tripping over the frame, and like i said - fluoro yellow padded vinyl covers would fix that pretty easily.

And the bar at neck height? so what? What is it you think that bar is going to do to someone? The article calls it a whiplash bar, but by nature of how a whiplash injury is caused, it should be called a whiplash prevention bar.

I am glad that 3 days on you finally addressed the point I raised about the fact that this isn't just an 'inhouse' design, and that they've cleared this with engineers. That point seemed to be ignored in the article whilst insisting that they've gone and done the same thing again that killed four people. Sure - previous modifications were probably signed off by engineers in house. I can all but guarantee that is no longer the case and externals are signing this off.

Nobody is suggesting that these canopies are best practice. Nobody is suggesting this is the best possible outcome. For those saying Ardent is rolling in money after divesting themselves of certain assets fail to note that whether Ardent has money or not, they rarely invest much of it into Dreamworld. At an uncertain time when even the most informed critics are doubtful whether the park will continue to survive into the future in it's current state, why would they invest in brand spanking new boats?

Clearly the solution has been signed off by externals, which is probably a step up from the previous internal processes. It'd be great if we all drove BMW's, but when a regularly serviced Toyota will do the job on a budget....

On 28/01/2018 at 11:54 AM, joz said:

It's funny the reaction this one has got, particuarly on facebook. There seems to be a subset of people who think Dreamworld should be immune from critisim no matter what they do. I want the park to do well, but they aren't a sacred cow, if they do something questionable then questions should be asked.

 

For me the big one is this; have DW learned anything from TRR?  You just had an accident on an in house ride, that has been modifoed from it's original design in a way that allowed the accident to happen. Why would you repeat that process with another ride? No other manufacturer has made a ride modification like this, so why do DW feel that making their own modifications again is a good idea? Call MACK or Whitewater West or Intamin, explain the issues and get them to advise on solutions. If they can't fix them, you tear it all down and start again. You don't put in a half arsed solution that you are 100% exposed on if something else goes bad.

 

People are like you need to support them 100%, well if you support the emperor then tell him he's not wearing pants. Support is telling hard truths.

I don't believe the park should be immune - however many of the questions being asked here are just a theoretical imagination of possibilities. Can anyone confirm whether the park has \ has not reached out to manufacturers? For all we know, they have, and the options given were "well, you can buy these really expensive new boats or you can put a canopy on what you've got"...

This modification most likely will cut a finger, or drop someone in the drink when they overbalance or trip. Hardly the same as killing someone who stands and falls out under a conveyor. Sure, there are risks created by these things, but the risk they cure is a lot worse. They could gold plate these things, but do they need to?

 

I personally think the canopies are ridiculous. Personally, I think they should have tried to do it differently. And as I mentioned - in agreement with the article - there are clearly better ways to do it.

However, clearly the park went through external audits after the accident, and clearly the park has changed how they do things. The park kept the ride shuttered for an entire year. Whilst we didn't see them doing much on the site, that doesn't mean they didn't have people working on it from day dot. For all we know, this is what the external auditors suggested, proposed, approved and signed off... and if that be the case, who is the park to question that?

I've no doubt that the park has done everything they possibly can within the allocated budget to cover their arse. Unless someone with internal knowledge wants to come out and advise otherwise (in which case they should, and NDA be damned, because these are people's lives at risk if so), then I don't think we, as the general public (as has been pointed out by community leaders here in the past), can sit here and categorically state how wrong the park is, on matters we have no intimate knowledge of.

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39 minutes ago, AlexB said:

However, clearly the park went through external audits after the accident, and clearly the park has changed how they do things. The park kept the ride shuttered for an entire year. Whilst we didn't see them doing much on the site, that doesn't mean they didn't have people working on it from day dot. For all we know, this is what the external auditors suggested, proposed, approved and signed off... and if that be the case, who is the park to question that?
 

“The Thunder River Rapids Ride had successfully completed its annual mechanical and structural safety engineering inspection on 29 September 2016. As per regulations, this safety audit was conducted by a specialist external engineering firm. Details of this external audit will be provided to the coroner and workplace safety investigators.”

DW would never have signed off on its own work prior to the accident. 

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Our theme park industry is under attack by the media and fringe groups.

The media is misrepresenting normal procedures, generating alarmist content for the sake of clickbait. Fringe activist groups are spreading misinformation and pseudoscience in an irrational vendetta against world-class animal exhibits and facilities.

The constant, dishonest media coverage and social campaigns are hurting our theme parks.

Our theme parks are safe. They are responsible. Help us spread the truth!

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@webslave that page is no longer linked on the site. We very consciously stepped back from it when it became apparent that the park most needing of support wasn't deserving of it in that manner. Remember at the time it was almost daily coverage of stoppages and animal nutjobs on top of Dreamworld's woes. It served a purpose at a particularly dark time.

@AlexB all I can really say is that you know us and you know our track record. We've been doing this a very long time, have been consistently accurate and have proved time and time again that we know things. It was described to me as elitist yesterday, but I'm pretty confident in how history will judge it.

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1 minute ago, Richard said:

@webslave that page is no longer linked on the site. We very consciously stepped back from it when it became apparent that the park most needing of support wasn't deserving of it in that manner. Remember at the time it was almost daily coverage of stoppages and animal nutjobs on top of Dreamworld's woes. It served a purpose at a particularly dark time.

Fair call, happy to admit I just Googled it.  I was not aware the site had stepped back from it, although it would have been interesting at the time if you'd been as public in doing so as you were in starting the campaign.  Can understand why you wouldn't.  Would you still stand by the claim that the parks are safe and responsible today?

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13 minutes ago, webslave said:

Would you still stand by the claim that the parks are safe and responsible today?

I think that's part of the problem... "the parks" refers to two operators that have very different standards and procedures. While at that point in time all the parks were suffering, I don't think it's fair to lump them together anymore.

The Log Ride changes are just one of a handful of situations and incidents that I've witnessed first-hand in recent months that has made me personally decide to no longer ride anything at Dreamworld.

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4 minutes ago, Richard said:

I think that's part of the problem... "the parks" refers to two operators that have very different standards and procedures. While at that point in time all the parks were suffering, I don't think it's fair to lump them together anymore.

The Log Ride changes are just one of a handful of situations and incidents that I've witnessed first-hand in recent months that has made me personally decide to no longer ride anything at Dreamworld.

You got me - I was being unnecessarily vague to avoid asking you the question directly about Dreamworld in case you didn't want to be that specific.

So, I have a family and will be visiting the region in under a month's time.  We had planned on visiting Dreamworld because we felt their ride offering better targets my 3-year-old kid, rather than visiting Movie World (mostly because mum and dad want to ride Rivals).  Would your advice as someone who has claimed previously (and credibly) to have access to inside information be that we reconsider our travel to Dreamworld at this time?

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2 minutes ago, Skeeta said:

I have a 3-year-old and I find my child enjoys SW 100 times more than DW or MW.

 

We were last at SW just over a year ago, and AFAIK there's not much doing there since.  The thinking on DW is that there's enough there to also keep mum and dad's interest as required, whereas at SW he doesn't recognize much in the way of their licenses and if he's in a bit of a mood and therefore decides no rides then it's a pretty ordinary day ahead.

MW has rivals, and the little bloke is Batman-obsessed, but outside of a chance encounter with a character on main street there's not a lot doing for him.

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49 minutes ago, Richard said:

 all I can really say is that you know us and you know our track record. We've been doing this a very long time, have been consistently accurate and have proved time and time again that we know things. It was described to me as elitist yesterday, but I'm pretty confident in how history will judge it.

So has Robb Alvey... but there are a lot of enthusiasts who hold a very different opinion of him today.

"we know things" - if it was anyone outside of the 'parkz staff' saying this without backing it they'd be fucking crucified - why is Parkz beyond reproach... track record?

The problem with cruising on a track record is it only takes one crash for that track record to be damaged.

You've still not acknowledged any error with the "whiplash bar" claims which is clearly incorrect and alarmist. Whilst there are many other facets of your article that I will admit you could be right about - that is not one of them - and your 'consistently accurate' claim doesn't wash for me whilst you continue to stand by that.

I personally haven't used 'Elitist' before, but to stand there and say 'trust us, we know things' when you're talking about this sort of stuff is a bit of a reach for your credibility. To claim you've seen things to make you "personally decide to no longer ride anything at Dreamworld" in almost the same breath as "trust us, we know things" tells a lot about what you really care about too.

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42 minutes ago, AlexB said:

if it was anyone outside of the 'parkz staff' saying this without backing

That's entirely the point. We're backing this with our track record. Feel free to disagree, but like I said, I'm pretty confident that history will vindicate this one like it has so many times before.

42 minutes ago, AlexB said:

You've still not acknowledged any error with the "whiplash bar" claims

That's because your point is complete nonsense. A Google search for whiplash headrest yields countless diagrams of "incorrect" headrests placed at precisely the same point as the bar on the boats. Restraining the neck while allowing free rotation of the head is just poor design on a ride where collisions from behind are normal and riders will frequently move, and often suddenly contort themselves to avoid getting wet. 

42 minutes ago, AlexB said:

To claim you've seen things to make you "personally decide to no longer ride anything at Dreamworld" in almost the same breath as "trust us, we know things" tells a lot about what you really care about too.

What does it tell you beyond the fact that I have made a decision based on my personal experiences? I'm sure you wouldn't go back to a cafe that serves lousy coffee or a mechanic that leaves your brakes squeaking. Using industry knowledge and connections all around the world for the purposes of writing articles is a little different from a gut feeling that I choose to express in particularly measured terms.

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The interesting thing I find was the bar was never part of the original design. 

No bar in any of these photos/videos.

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I wonder who designed the cage in the first place that wasn't adequately braced?

I wonder who signed off to strengthen the frame up with a bar?

I wonder if this is this was the reason the opening of the Log Ride was pushed back?

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1 hour ago, Skeeta said:

I wonder who designed the cage in the first place that wasn't adequately braced?

I wonder who signed off to strengthen the frame up with a bar?

I wonder if this is this was the reason the opening of the Log Ride was pushed back?

It doesn't look like it was added for structural reasons.  It looks more like it was added to fill the big gap at the back of the boat to prevent small people (kids/teenagers) from sitting up on the rear backrest and leaning out the back of the boat while holding onto the frame.

Interestingly, after those original photos were posted here, a few people commented that stupid teenagers would do exactly that... and then the design was changed to add this additional bar.  So, maybe @Richard has a point about the track record thing.

This whole design just wreaks of trying to appease government regulators. 

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13 minutes ago, wikiverse said:

It doesn't look like it was added for structural reasons.  It looks more like it was added to fill the big gap at the back of the boat to prevent small people (kids/teenagers) from sitting up on the rear backrest and leaning out the back of the boat while holding onto the frame.

Interestingly, after those original photos were posted here, a few people commented that stupid teenagers would do exactly that... and then the design was changed to add this additional bar.  So, maybe @Richard has a point about the track record thing.

This whole design just wreaks of trying to appease government regulators. 

its more ardent are doing what they think they need to do to stop another accident happening on there watch 

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20 minutes ago, wikiverse said:

It doesn't look like it was added for structural reasons.  It looks more like it was added to fill the big gap at the back of the boat to prevent small people (kids/teenagers) from sitting up on the rear backrest and leaning out the back of the boat while holding onto the frame.

Interestingly, after those original photos were posted here, a few people commented that stupid teenagers would do exactly that... and then the design was changed to add this additional bar.  So, maybe @Richard has a point about the track record thing.

This whole design just wreaks of trying to appease government regulators. 

You could be right but if securing a bar at the back is to stop people from getting up the back what has DW done up the very front to stop people from sitting up there?

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7 minutes ago, Skeeta said:

You could be right but if securing a bar at the back is to stop people from getting up the back what has DW done up the very front to stop people from sitting up there?

 

you are right but hows it going to look if they put a bar in your view - face 

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31 minutes ago, JeffreyMoore said:

you are right but hows it going to look if they put a bar in your view - face 

HaHa have you seen the roof?  I don't think DW cares how it looks at this point.  The new Ferris Wheel is like you are looking out of a cell, why not the LR?

Edited by Skeeta

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