The parks

The memories

The site

 

The Logger's Run accident

Share your memories of working at Marriott's GREAT AMERICA in Santa Clara

The Logger's Run accident

Postby segerken » Mon Aug 08, 2005 6:32 pm

For several days in ’78 or ’79, I can’t remember which year, the chute on Logger’s Run shutting down 1 or 2 times per hour. The operator up there would look down to see if everything was clear and then start them back up.

One afternoon while working the unloading position in the station I saw a log go down the left chute and come to a very fast stop at the base of the chute. I ran to the panel and hit the button that shut down the chutes, the 2nd lift, the first lift, and the station. As trained, I did not hit the button that shuts every thing down including the pumps. I then notice that the operator start up the chute right away. He did that because the log at the bottom of the left chute was in a blind spot to him. From the main panel I stopped the chute again and quickly called the person up at the chutes. Unfortunately, a second log had already gone down the left chute. I then called the park emergency number to report the accident. We then went out to the ride where the two logs were to see if we could help the people in the logs. As it turns out, the 3 people in the stuck log saw the second one start coming and jumped into the lake. The second one that hit the stuck log had two little kids in it. Luckily nobody was hurt. One of the guys in the first log had torn the crotch out of his pants.

After coming down the chute, there is a track that ends where the two chutes come together that the logs running wheels run on. The track is held up a few inches by posts. The purpose of this track is to hold the log up so the water in the flume won’t slow it down to fast at the bottom of the chutes and to get the people as wet as possible.

What caused the accident was that the track had separated from the posts. When the log that got stuck reached the bottom of the chute, the track had bounced up and instead of the running wheels going on top of it, they went underneath it and the first post stopped the log. Of course the second log ran into the rear of the first log. I was amazed how little damage there was to the two logs because they hit at the fastest part of the ride.

Afterwards one of my mechanic friends told me that he had noticed several days prior to the accident that the track was behaving in a weird manner and reported it to his supervisor. He also said nothing was done about the problem prior to the accident.

In the incident report I made a suggest for the button I had pressed should be a dead man button so that nobody else can start the ride back up without someone releasing the dead man button. This would have kept the person up on top of the chutes from restarting them. The next day the button was replaced with a dead man button on both Logger’s and the Yankee Clipper.

During this season, the Yankee Clipper was not being operated during the week, so we went over and operated the Yankee Clipper for a couple of weeks until they had Logger’s fixed. While Logger’s was closed there was a garbage can but in front of the entrance to keep people from trying to get in line. One day the person up at the top of Yankee’s chute looked down and saw guests sitting in the Logger’s logs that were in the station. Never mind that there was no water in the flume, there were no operators around, and there were tools laying on the veridine (turntable). He called down to the Yankee station and someone went over and chased the people out of the station.
segerken
Gulf Coaster
 
Posts: 46
Joined: Tue Jul 19, 2005 2:37 pm

Postby steven » Mon Aug 08, 2005 9:43 pm

I'm glad that no one was injured. It's lucky that the people who self-evacuated from the log were not hurt. At other parks, serious injuries and fatalities have occurred when passengers got out of log rides mid-course. A key difference in most of those cases, I believe, was that people got out of moving logs rather than one that was stopped.

Steven
User avatar
steven
Site Admin
 
Posts: 553
Joined: Fri Jul 08, 2005 9:12 pm

Postby m11stephen2 » Mon Oct 24, 2005 6:27 pm

They should put lapbars in the logs on log rides. Or would this be unsafe if the log flipped over?
User avatar
m11stephen2
Yankee Clipper
 
Posts: 68
Joined: Fri Oct 07, 2005 2:02 pm
Location: Milwaukee, WI

Postby that_guy » Mon Oct 24, 2005 7:00 pm

I don't think the logs would flip over during the ride seeing how narrow the flumes are, I don't think it is needed. I REALLY think the SC River Rapids ride needs better seatbelts, If you have been on it you know what I mean…(one elastic seatbelt per 2 people 1 foot away from your body)
User avatar
that_guy
Tidal Wave
 
Posts: 482
Joined: Tue Aug 09, 2005 9:10 pm
Location: Pacific Grove, California

Postby twixmix0303 » Mon Oct 24, 2005 8:01 pm

Those seatbelts are one next to ineffective. People don't wear them properly a lot of times (kids will put it around their neck).
User avatar
twixmix0303
Yankee Clipper
 
Posts: 72
Joined: Sun Aug 07, 2005 10:47 pm

Postby m11stephen2 » Tue Oct 25, 2005 6:48 pm

They should have one seatbelt for each person. They should also install sensors that notifies the operators if they are unbuckled during the ride.
User avatar
m11stephen2
Yankee Clipper
 
Posts: 68
Joined: Fri Oct 07, 2005 2:02 pm
Location: Milwaukee, WI

Postby that_guy » Tue Oct 25, 2005 6:53 pm

yeah, they should also have a better stopping system for the ride(your are stop a few times during the ride) because they are very rough, otherwise seatbelts aren't REALLY needed. Also they need to fine tune the system because everytime I go the rafts get stuck near the lift plus the fountians don't always work.
User avatar
that_guy
Tidal Wave
 
Posts: 482
Joined: Tue Aug 09, 2005 9:10 pm
Location: Pacific Grove, California

Postby Station1 » Wed Nov 29, 2006 11:24 pm

They said the RR Rapids rafts could not flip over until about the second week we opened, one raft lingered just outside the station turntable and another left the station and both rafts were side by side and because of the current, the rafts spun against each other and the lighter one began to tilt up and ended up flipping over. Fortuneatley the guests evacuated before the raft fell on them (which could have trapped them) the upside down raft ended up just before Tower 1. One of my crew jumped into the water as we were not 100% if everyone got out from under the raft. EMT's & security had no idea where the raft was luckily I was waiting at the electrical room and directed them over as it was still "new territory" to them.

The ride was closed for a week as was the Knotts Berry Farm ride also until they could construct a narrower channel leaving the station. Anyway, I do not think seatbelts are necessary on those rides, but the industry looks at it as if it saves one life or prevents one injury then it is worth it.
84-85 Area Host - Hometown
86-87 Rides - Whizzer (86) Revolution (87)
1987 Rides - New Orleans (Rue/Delta/Orbit)
88-89 Rides - New Orleans (" " RR Rapids)
89-95 Loss Prevention - Station One
User avatar
Station1
Gulf Coaster
 
Posts: 16
Joined: Fri Nov 10, 2006 9:46 pm
Location: San Diego

Postby jonrev » Wed Nov 29, 2006 11:34 pm

^at Gurnee's Roaring Rapids I have seen people switching seats on the boats alot near the water sprayers. Does/did that happen alot at Santa Clara?
Gurnee Ride Op - 2007
User avatar
jonrev
Tidal Wave
 
Posts: 428
Joined: Sat Sep 03, 2005 12:42 pm
Location: Grayslake, Illinois

Postby that_guy » Thu Nov 30, 2006 5:32 pm

jonrev wrote:^at Gurnee's Roaring Rapids I have seen people switching seats on the boats alot near the water sprayers. Does/did that happen alot at Santa Clara?


I have never seen it done, there isn't enough room, but with teenagers now a days, anything could happen if their desperate enough. But I have seen people move to an adjacent vacant seats, since they are coupled and use the same seatbelt.
The rides are GREAT, the shows are GREAT, the fun is GREAT, at Marriott's Great America! REMEMBER Marriott's GREAT AMERICA, REMEMBER Marriott's GREAT AMERICA!
User avatar
that_guy
Tidal Wave
 
Posts: 482
Joined: Tue Aug 09, 2005 9:10 pm
Location: Pacific Grove, California

Postby jonrev » Thu Nov 30, 2006 8:21 pm

^That's what I saw.
Gurnee Ride Op - 2007
User avatar
jonrev
Tidal Wave
 
Posts: 428
Joined: Sat Sep 03, 2005 12:42 pm
Location: Grayslake, Illinois

Postby retlawfan » Sat Feb 17, 2007 11:03 pm

Station1 wrote:They said the RR Rapids rafts could not flip over until about the second week we opened, one raft lingered just outside the station turntable and another left the station and both rafts were side by side and because of the current, the rafts spun against each other and the lighter one began to tilt up and ended up flipping over.


I remember that incident. I responded from the Redwood Amphetheater area. I was removing my duty belt and gear as I approached the area. I was just about to jump in the water as I arrived, but was informed that everyone had just been accounted for. Luckily, noone was seriously injured. The ride staff, the security staff, and the EMTs all did a great job accounting for, and tending to, the guests who had gone into the water.

Ah, memories...
Great America Security
Santa Clara
1989-1992
User avatar
retlawfan
Yankee Clipper
 
Posts: 79
Joined: Fri Dec 16, 2005 12:38 am
Location: Gilroy, CA

Postby dpxtreme » Sun Mar 04, 2007 7:14 pm

Hopefully I never get to experience something like that.
User avatar
dpxtreme
Tidal Wave
 
Posts: 323
Joined: Wed Mar 15, 2006 7:03 pm
Location: Bay Area

Postby MGA1 » Sun Jul 20, 2008 9:20 pm

This incident must have happened in 1978. I worked on the Loggers Run crew in Gurnee in '78 and remember hearing about the Santa Clara accident. We were told one log in Santa Clara went down the left chute with a missing guide wheel & the log got stuck in the metal swing gate at the bottom of the chutes where the two flume chutes merge back into one flume path. Then a second log came down the right chute, hit and rode over the log that was already stuck at the bottom of the chute. We were told no one was seriously injured but they never told us the guests had jumped out of the log into the lake.

I remember they retraining us on the chute operating procedures and also that the second lift person was being held responsible for visually inspecting every log that came up the lift to ensure all the guide wheels were attached. I remember at least two incidents where the second lift operator noticed a missing guide wheel and used the emergency phone to call the chutes operator and the loading turntable operator. The procedure was that the chutes operator would close the chutes gate just before the log missing the wheel got to the chutes area. The guests were told there was a problem with their log and they had to step out of their log onto that scary wooden catwalk that runs alongside the flume. The lead would come up to the chutes area and escort the guest as they walked all the way around the elevated cat walk and down the the ramp by second lift.
"...and enjoy the rest of your day here at Marriott's GRRRREAT America"
User avatar
MGA1
Willard's Whizzer
 
Posts: 100
Joined: Wed Apr 09, 2008 11:19 am
Location: Orlando, FL

Postby RavenLenore13 » Thu Apr 16, 2009 1:52 pm

RRRapids:
On my first day of ride training in '88m I was up on Loggers 2nd lift w/ my lead Matt Kees. RRR was drained. I asked why & he said it was because a raft flipped...
User avatar
RavenLenore13
Gulf Coaster
 
Posts: 12
Joined: Fri Mar 13, 2009 11:47 pm
Location: San Jose, CA

Next

Return to Santa Clara

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 1 guest

cron