Real World Theme Parks Your worst experience at a park

When I was little I went on a coaster with my dad. IO guess I was too small and I almost flew out of the thing. My dad saved me by holding onto me. I hate coasters, maybe because I have a PTSD thing about that incident which I barely remember. I just don't go to parks, mostly because of the sun/heat thing which I can't do.

I am wondering what's your worst park experience?
Six Flags Great America. During FrightFest, park was open late and it was quite cold outside that time of year in the Chicago area. We decided to go on one last ride on the Superman 'flying' coaster before going home. Got through the ride fine, until the brake station right at the end, before going into the unload station...the ride broke, and we were left hanging there face down for over 30 mins in the freezing cold. Arms were hanging, falling asleep and turning numb, had to pee like the ens, my head was hanging limp feeling like it should fall off my shoulders. Not a fun way to end the day. Finally we moved and were able to get off close to 1 am. Walking out...we were just about the only ones left in the park.
Oh poor Wowman... That's terrible! Not even a little something to ease the pain? A voucher or goodie or whatever?! Terrible service...
Not going regular to theme parks or funfair and only mostly to Walibi Flevoland and Efteling. In Efteling i went on that wooden coaster Joris en de Draak. Terribly shaky and much to wild for me i was getting a unpleasant feeling in my tummy and my head was banging i had to recover for an hour. Afterwards i joined my friends for Droomvlucht a easy ride for little kiddies but i was getting that nasty feeling again in my head and tummy. And at the end when the ride stopped everything came out. I was getting nasty looks and people didn't understand why i'd get so sick from droomvlucht?

Personnel were super friendly and cleaned everything right away i felt so guilty... Never ever i will go on Joris en de Draak!
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In early teenage years I went with friends to a summerland, a park type that is mostly play structures, motor based circuits swimming pools but also a few carnival type rides.

I went on a double swinging ride, that is doing a full rotation type. I went on that ride, and midway the shoulder bar went loose and I had it like hmm.. 50 cm open. I was alone in my row (row of 2 seats, and not easily seen because of walls) I braced against the front wall the whole ride. I wasn't happy camper. But because I was alone plus being deaf, early teenager embarrassed etc, I did not tell them, I just went off and walked from there.
Park: Skara Sommarland, ride: dubbelkorven

At Liseberg, simulator movie with moving seats. Simulatour.
The strap went off and I was strapless. I jumped off it. Did not report here either. :p

Then other than those "could have gone wrong" things, I have only gotten badly treated and such, but it is less of personal danger and more of "I feel mistreated" ways so I won't list.

Oh yes, I forgot, at Lisebergsbanan, Liseberg, one quite recently the train got held up at the section brake/booster combo thingy and had to wait a few minutes, and then we got released and went on the whole circuit. Nothing odd in Planet coaster in poorly designed coasters ;) But IRL it wasn't too fun. If not in know of how coasters work one could easily get nervous being slammed into, but it is not so. (but instead opposite, precisely because of that.)
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this is a great thread.[big grin]

I have another story...years ago in an indoor park called Old Chicago. It was an amazing concept, but never really worked. Crowds were always very light. We drove out to the burbs from the city as teenage kids...this was one of our first big trips once we were allowed to drive on our own. All I remember was it felt like we were driving for hours, but years later I look back and think "That should have took us like 45 mins???" Anyway - light crowds and ride ops were giving extra bonus time on rides as no one else was in line waiting. I remember multiple runs on the coaster without getting off, and being on the round up for an eternity (and not getting sick)...then we went on the cliff hanger. Oh boy, spinning in that tight circle for way to long. It was fun for a while. Then we saw some other kid starting to get a sick look on his face. Everyone was screaming "STOP THE RIDE, STOP THE RIDE" as we all believed we were about to get splattered with puke. After several more minutes they finally stopped and the kid blew chunks just as we all drop back to the ground. Man was it close...the fear of getting sprayed with that was horrible.
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Good lord. I thought I was nuts for liking this game after almost dying but you guys are right with me. HA!
I love going to parks! That has to said. ;) Did not scare me off parks in entirety. But I am wary of rickety "moving carnival" fairs so I avoid those. Generally.
Hersheypark in 2016 and 2017 was pretty awful, one train operations on most rides, lines spilling out of the queue into the main midway, extremely rude staff, and worst of all extremely slow dispatch times. In short I will never go back to this park again.
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The Santa Cruz Beach Boardwalk used to have a steel mouse coaster that cranked up G forces too high. When riding it, I had to use my whole body to push my head against the head rest as hard as I could, otherwise the ride would snap my neck. Even then, I remember one time that I had a sore neck for a week after going on that ride. That was the last time I rode it. They finally got rid of that coaster.
^ wow, did you tell seaworld what happened? Surely it's the sign of a poorly designed ride if you can break ribs just because you sat up.
^ Yes I had a look on youtube at the ride.

Still, as you would know, Australia has a poor track record of coaster safety. Movie World's "Lethal Weapon" ride had to be renamed and modified after it left too many riders with sore necks. I heard a rumour someone actually broke their neck on this ride, they survived but sustained neck fractures. I can't find confirmation of this online, it would have been about 10 years ago. There's plenty of old comments about how it "kills your neck" you can find if you search.

I think feedback should be given when anything like this happens. They actually would want to know, and I think important to have that incident on record. Don't take all the blame. We trust coaster engineering and safety with our lives, but in truth it's an evolving science.
Not gonna get into full detail but i had to cut a day at Great America in half after i blew chunks near the Roaring Rapids sprayers due to overheating so ya[mouth shut]

Chante Goodman

Community Manager
Mine was when I went to Port Aventura in Spain this summer. Full disclaimer, I love theme parks and rollercoasters and that was most likely my downfall, as I made my friend queue with me for the ride 'Red Force' as we were told it was a 45 minute wait time, in +34 celcius heat, but turned out to be 3 hours. Very overheated, mouth was so dry it was hard to swallow, covered in sweat. My friend who is very fair skinned and has never done well in hot temperatures was close to fainting when we got on. Considering the ride lasts about 10 seconds, it wasn't worth it and it basically turned in to a huge waste of money as it put my friend off riding most of the rollercoasters and we had time for two more rides. 8 hours in a park, 70 euros and 3 rides = a waste of our money and a waste of a day we could have spent in Barcelona, where we went to holiday. Extremely disappointed. Googled Port Aventura after to discover a lot of reviews saying the wait times are always a massive under-estimation. Would love to go again some day and ride the majority of rides, but definitely not in the height of the summer!
Orient Express Ride Restraint Fail

I had a very nervous coaster ride once at World's of Fun in Kansas City, Missouri (USA) when I was a teen, I had ridden the roller coaster called Orient Express many times without issue. This time it was normal. Except when I pulled up on the over-the-shoulder restraint just before we got to the top of the hill (its a nervous thing I do to reassure myself its really safe) the restraint went all the way up like it would if I was getting off the ride.

Apparently it never locked into place when I got on and the ride operator must have failed to do a check as well (it was the 80s before safety concerns were ramped up to the level we have today). I nearly wet myself. I pulled down on the restraint as quickly as I could. I could feel it click and lock.....but I had lost all faith in the ride for the moment. I then held on as tightly as I could to something other than the shoulder restraint and prayed I wouldn't fly out when we went through the loops.

In truth, I doubt I would have fallen out even without restraints. I'm pretty sure g-force would have kept me in my seat the entire time on that coaster. But then again, it's the same coaster that derailed in a loop after part of the metal structure fractured. But that was much later in the late 90s. Long after I had stopped riding it.

Here's a video of that coaster:
The Zipper Ride From Hell

The absolute scariest time I ever had on an amusement ride was at the Fiesta San Antonio, which is a giant street fair in the middle of San Antonio, Texas each year. I think I was 13 or 14 years old. I was always afraid of the carnival ride called The Zipper (Kick Flip in Planet Coaster). But I decided this was the year I was brave enough to try riding it. I was alone in my decision as I think nobody at all bought a ticket for the ride when I got onto it. I climbed into the little human-shaped basket and the ride attendant shut the cage door and locked me in.

The ride started slowly and my cage began to move around the elongated swing arm. And swing arm began to rotate too. Soon I was flipping over and over and over again. Then I began to notice that every time my cage flipped over the thin metal safety pin that was holding the cage onto the swing arm began to bulge a little more than it had before. After I got over the shock that this entire carnival ride was held together with metal pins, I started to panic because it felt as if the entire cage unit I was in was going to pull right off the metal rod that it was pinned to. I was convinced that flexing thin metal pin would not hold.

So I did what any rational 13-14 year old would do. I screamed my freaking head off asking the ride operator to STOP THE RIDE!!!!!!! And every time I went around the circuit and could look him in the eye he just smiled and kept the ride going. it felt like eternity.

I don't know how long I was on that ride because my perception was based on being scared out of my mind. it may have just been 30 seconds. But I suspect now that he kept that ride running longer than usual because there was not a line for it and 1) It was probably funny watching me lose my mind from fear, and 2) since there were no other passengers and no line waiting (it was early in the evening before the crowds were there) it probably was a bigger attention-getter/ticket-seller to leave me on the ride screaming than to just sit there not moving at all.

I prayed to God that if I ever made it off the ride alive I would NEVER RIDE ANOTHER CARNIVAL RIDE AGAIN FOR AS LONG AS I LIVED! That lasted about as long as most people's New Year's resolutions. I ended up riding a lot more rides after that.....but it took about a decade before I dared ride one at a traveling carnival again. Eventually I even rode another zipper ride again....and loved it.
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