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Thread: Woman Is Thrown to Her Death from Rollercoaster in Texas

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    Elite Member Bluebonnet's Avatar
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    Default Woman Is Thrown to Her Death from Rollercoaster in Texas

    I have ridden this rollercoaster more than once over the years.

    Woman killed on Six Flags Texas roller coaster identified

    The woman who plummeted to her death Friday evening riding a roller coaster at Six Flags Over Texas in Arlington has been identified.
    Rosy Esparza
    /Esparza family, via KTVT-TV
    CBS affiliate KTVT in Dallas reports the woman's name is Rosy Esparza, and it was her first time visiting the popular theme park.
    She was riding The Texas Giant, the tallest steel-hybrid roller coaster in the world when she somehow fell from the ride as her young son sat by her side. Esparza expressed concern, according to witnesses, about her lap bar not being secure. Several other witnesses on social media immediately after the incident said it appeared her restraint either broke or came loose. Investigators have yet to confirm it though.
    He was screaming "My mom, my mom -- we've got to get my mom... she's gone," according to multiple witnesses who were next in line to ride the roller coaster.
    "We were the people standing there when the car pulled up and it was empty," said witness John Putnam who was at the amusement park with his family.


    An image of the Texas Giant.
    /CBS 11
    Six Flags spokesperson Sharon Parker sent the following statement Friday night to KTVT via email: "We are deeply saddened to share that earlier this evening an adult woman died in the park while on the Texas Giant. Park medical staff and local paramedics responded immediately. Since the safety of our guests and employees is our number one priority, the ride has been closed pending further investigation. Our thoughts and prayers are with the family and friends during this difficult time."
    Six Flags tweeted the following after the tragic incident.

    https://twitter.com/SixFlagsOverTX?t...w_p=tweetembed

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    Woman dies on roller coaster at Six Flags Over Texas

    Kanisha Howell says she was standing in line with her daughter, waiting to ride the roller coaster. They said they were watching it as it reached a peak. "When it got in the air and started coming down, I don't know if she had a seizure or what, but she fell out of the cart and just fell out of the sky. We're leaving now because my daughter, we both cried and were terrified and I didn't want to ride anything else," she said.
    Howell said the woman was there with children, and that the ride was immediately shut down after the accident as park goers were quickly moved away from the area. She said emergency responders arrived but it took them awhile to actually locate the victim.
    Park visitors were not told immediately of the accident, although word of the woman's death traveled quickly by word-of-mouth and on social media.
    "A little scary to know that something like that happened," said park visitor Mel Price.
    "It was just shocking to me," said Kyra Coleman. "I never knew that someone can die at an amusement park. I always thought that they do have safety precautions and they do check everybody, so I didn't know that this could happen."
    On Twitter, witnesses described the unimaginable horror.
    "Literally just witnessed someone fly off the Texas giant two seats in front of me," wrote Josh Fleak (@joshfleak).
    Ethan Perry (@TheEthanPerry) posted: "It's crazy that I was at Six Flags today and a woman died on the Texas giant while I was there. Who knows when your last day will be."
    The Arlington Fire Department has taken the lead in this investigation - and have yet to brief the media.
    Six Flags released the following statement Saturday: "We are committed to determining the cause of this tragic accident and will utilize every resource throughout this process. It would be a disservice to the family to speculate regarding what transpired. When we have new information to provide, we will do so. Our thoughts, prayers and full support remain with the family."
    It's unknown how long The Texas Giant will remain closed or how long the investigation will take. All concerts at Six Flags have been cancelled for the weekend. Since 2008, 14 injury reports (mostly minor) have taken place on The Texas Giant.
    When it opened in 1990, the Texas Giant was billed as the tallest wooden roller coaster in the world. The ride closed for the 2010 season in which the all-wooden track was replaced with a new prefabricated steel system. The new Texas Giant reopened to the public in 2011. According to the Six Flags website, the new ride has "beyond vertical" banked turns and the steepest drop of any wooden coaster at 79-degrees. The original Texas Giant cost $5.5 million dollars. The refurbishment cost an additional $10 million.

    Woman killed on Six Flags Texas roller coaster identified - CBS News
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    Elite Member MohandasKGanja's Avatar
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    This is the first time I've seen her photo. In all seriousness, I think the problem was related to her size. We were just on a bunch of coasters this weekend, and for certain coasters, if the safety bar is not touching your thighs, then you are not properly secured for staying in some of these rides. Especially ones that have a steep (practically 90 degree) dropoff, like this one does.

    I'm thinking that the bar touched her abdomen and not her thighs, which I thought she was quoted as saying just before the coaster took off.

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    Elite Member SHELLEE's Avatar
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    How horrible, her poor son.
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    Elite Member Moongirl's Avatar
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    I read in the Daily Mail that several people heard only one "click" as she was secured into her seat, while everyone elses clicked three times. Supposedly, someone asked if they could re-secure her, and a park employee said as long as they heard a click, she was fine. I have a feeling she was not secured in properly, which she should have been, regardless of her size.

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    Elite Member roslyntaberfan's Avatar
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    This is awful, how terrible for her son. I love rollercoasters but stories such as this one send shivers down my spine. Thinking about it, it's actually quite lucky she didn't land on anyone/the tracks when she fell. A lot more people could have been hurt.
    Rest in Peace my beautiful little Bonnie

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    Elite Member Laurent's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by MohandasKGanja View Post
    In all seriousness, I think the problem was related to her size.
    Me, too. And that's tricky, because I know that people don't want to be embarrassed by being told that they're too large for something like a ride or a seat or whatever. I get that. But when it creates an unsafe situation, like this may have, you have to wonder what's more important.

    Of course, it may not have been related to her size at all, but it made me wonder, too.
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    Elite Member Sarzy's Avatar
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    Her size made me wonder too.

    Her poor son. I don't know how you'd ever get over this, the shock would be unimaginable. Awful for all the other people there too.

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    Hit By Ban Bus! rockchick's Avatar
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    I hate rollercoasters. My BIL goaded me to get on one here at our 6 flags and I hated every minute of it. Never again.
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    Elite Member whitetigeress's Avatar
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    If only one click is heard when there was suppose to be three, then it's not her size, it's the damn attendant who didn't do a proper job of either making her secure or telling her she can't ride.
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    Elite Member MohandasKGanja's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Moongirl View Post
    I read in the Daily Mail that several people heard only one "click" as she was secured into her seat, while everyone elses clicked three times. Supposedly, someone asked if they could re-secure her, and a park employee said as long as they heard a click, she was fine. I have a feeling she was not secured in properly, which she should have been, regardless of her size.
    Quote Originally Posted by Sarzy View Post
    Her size made me wonder too.

    Her poor son. I don't know how you'd ever get over this, the shock would be unimaginable. Awful for all the other people there too.
    We were in Hershey Park this weekend, and there were a couple of rides where they mentioned weight limits for riders. However, it's not like they had a scale - it was more of an advisement that was to your discretion.

    Back in May, we were in Busch Gardens Tampa, and a VERY large woman was goaded by her kids to get on a particular ride. I can't even remember what the heck it was. It was the kind of seat where you actually almost had to hop backward into it. She couldn't do it herself and the attendant and her kids kept trying to lift her. But even when they did, she didn't fit in the seat itself. She eventually had to give up. I can't imagine the embarrassment she felt walking away from that in front of hundreds of waiting riders.

    Quote Originally Posted by rockchick View Post
    I hate rollercoasters. My BIL goaded me to get on one here at our 6 flags and I hated every minute of it. Never again.
    We were on the coaster below (Storm Runner) on Saturday. It only last about 90 seconds, but it feels like it's going to kill you. It is REALLY, REALLY hard on your neck. I think it's a dangerous ride, and I was glad it was so short in duration.



    Quote Originally Posted by whitetigeress View Post
    If only one click is heard when there was suppose to be three, then it's not her size, it's the damn attendant who didn't do a proper job of either making her secure or telling her she can't ride.
    The problem is that the bar makes each click as it gets closer to your body. If your stomach protrudes enough, it's going to stop the bar at the first click. It does sound like it's the attendant's fault. They probably let her go for the sake of expediency on a crowded day.
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    I thought it had something to do with her size as well.

    I have a friend who is plus-sized (okay, maybe more than plus-sized). We went to the GA park in NJ once and I don't recall which roller coaster (Batman?) it was but the attendants went row by row, checking to make sure that the harnesses/belts were secure. Hers wasn't secure because of her size so she was told that she wouldn't be able to ride the coaster. We all got off with her.

    Do they not physically and personally check the belts before letting the ride leave the station? It takes all of one minute.
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    Elite Member ConstanceSpry's Avatar
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    I didn't realize she was that large. She must have been wedged like a champagne cork, ready to pop out.
    'I had to get rid of the kid. The cat was allergic.'

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    Elite Member gas_chick's Avatar
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    Sadly it probably was due to her size and could have been prevented if there were rules in place. I feel badly for her son.
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    Elite Member levitt's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by deenz View Post
    I thought it had something to do with her size as well.

    I have a friend who is plus-sized (okay, maybe more than plus-sized). We went to the GA park in NJ once and I don't recall which roller coaster (Batman?) it was but the attendants went row by row, checking to make sure that the harnesses/belts were secure. Hers wasn't secure because of her size so she was told that she wouldn't be able to ride the coaster. We all got off with her.

    Do they not physically and personally check the belts before letting the ride leave the station? It takes all of one minute.
    When I've been on rides at Islands of Adventure in Orlando (I've been a million times) they always seem to go row by row and press on all overhead bars and tug on the seatbelt connected between the seat and the overhead bar to make sure it's clicked all the way/secure. I always have major anxiety when it comes to coasters, even though I love actually riding them. I know in the past the seat has clicked one more time when the assistant has checked it for me, those overhead bars can be pretty weighty and when I was 12/15 I don't think I had the upper body strength to push them all the way down. So yes, part of their job, if not the most important part, is to check that everyone is secure and safe.
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    Elite Member McJag's Avatar
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    This is so sad and horrified everyone here. The German manufacturer investigator is here. We should know more shortly. The family will never get over this. She was with her son & daughter-in-law for a special treat.
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