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A white-knuckle ride from which a girl fell to her death will re-open next month following a health and safety prohibition notice requiring changes to restraints, it emerged today.
Schoolgirl Hayley Williams, 16, from Pontypool, died after plunging 100ft from the Hydro ride at Oakwood Theme Park in west Wales last April.
Swansea schoolboy Martin Rothwell, aged 10 at the time, was hit in the head and injured by the teenager as she fell past him.
A major police and Health and Safety Executive inquiry was launched into the tragedy, witnessed by dozens of horrified visitors.
A Dyfed Powys Police statement issued today read: “We can confirm that the Hydro ride involved in the occurrence has now been released back to Oakwood Leisure Ltd.
“The Health and Safety Executive have issued a Prohibition Notice, requiring changes to the ride’s passenger containment system prior to it being operated with passengers again.
“The joint investigation, by Dyfed Powys Police and the Health and Safety Executive, into the incident is continuing.”
Paddy McNamara, managing director of Oakwood Theme Park, said Oakwood will be re-opening for the 2005 season on March 24 and Hydro will re-open at the same time.
He said: “Following recommendations by the Health and Safety Executive as a result of their investigation, we are replacing the interior of the Hydro boat and installing over the shoulder restraints with an interlock mechanism.
“As with all rides at Oakwood, Hydro ride operation and design is signed off as safe by independent certifying engineers before it is opened to the public.
“We do however acknowledge the need to provide additional reassurance to future riders and are quite sure the new system will do this.
“It was appropriate that Hydro remained closed last year, but we are pleased it will re-open as it has always been an extremely popular ride at Oakwood and it has been enjoyed by hundreds of thousands of riders in the past.“
The ride has been billed by the theme park as: “Europe’s fastest and wettest water coaster“.
Last edited by larrygator on Sat Feb 21, 2015 12:18 pm.
The only reason I would think they wouldn't be the PP restraints is because of this line:
"He said: “Following recommendations by the Health and Safety Executive as a result of their investigation, we are replacing the interior of the Hydro boat and installing over the shoulder restraints with an interlock mechanism."
They wouldn't need to replace the interior of the boat for those restraints.
But who knows until the damn thing opens or we get a photo.
Call me insensitive, but it's starting to bother me how over-restrained rides are. Even if there has been an accident, it seems a bit over the edge to me to put OTSRs on shoot the chutes and coaster that don't go upside-down. It seems a bit over the edge to me sometimes to put OTSRs on some rides that do go upside-down. When an accident happens, is there nothing that can be done to improve the lap bars? I don't know, am I alone on this feeling?
People with two-digit IQ's and no numbers higher than 5 in it is a major part of the commom people that will demand such solutions if just a single accident happen. Hundreds, maybe thousands are killed or injured in car crashed every single day, and I've yet to hear about an Arkansas housewive causing public uproar because of it. Why don't they force people to install OTSRs in cars now, huh? (Which would be hilarious )
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