Wednesday, August 10, 2016

If only someone at Verruckt had ever made a paper airplane--and taught the team how to distribute the human cargo in the raft

So the Schlitterbahn/Verrucht engineers knew from the gitgo.  Full loaded with 1000 pounds but no humans, the raft went airborne.  Watch the 35 sec. video:

Repeated test failures with sandbags a'flyin.  And every week, passengers reported to staff: we went airborne for awhile!  They.Did.Nothing.

Now anyone who ever made a paper airplane knows: you put weight in the front, to lower the nose.  Not the back.

It's called the coefficient of drag.

They smoothed out the 2nd hill.  To lower the nose of the raft.  But they didn't change the weight minimums, or how the human cargo was loaded on the Verrucht raft carrying little Caleb Schwab to his death and two sisters from Smith Center to the hospital, one with a broken jaw.

Note: I never took physics in high school, but if I can figure this out, they should have, as well.

I have been on my share of airplanes.  Loading the "luggage"--human as well as Samsonite-- keeps the plane from crashing.  Just last December, I had to check my carry-on bag.  I was on a smaller jet.   American Airlines calculated knowing that after Christmas, our passenger carry-on bags were WAY overloaded with gifts.  So they forced us to check them.  Stowed them below us for ballast and balance.

The Schlitterbahn engineers of Verrucht knew enough about load distribution to experiment with seat placement.  Here's the first design with the back seat way to the back wall:

And then they moved it forward:

But on the fateful day, what did the staff do?

Did they put the lightest passenger (maybe 70 pounds?) in the front seat, leaving two heavier ladies to add the required total of 400 pounds in the back????

I'd like to see the training manual for the staff at the top of the slide.  Do you let people decide where to sit?

This disaster is a repeat of the Hyatt hotel collapse.  Inevitable.

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  1. First of all, no one should curse at you. Sorry they did that. Back to point. How tall or short or large frame or small were the women. That is a factor. If both tall, they needed more leg room and move seat up since child was small framed. Less footing. Look at the front. See the foot stains on the padding?

  2. Foot stains are near hand rails at front and at top of near front. A really tight seatbelt could be razor sharp if wet with that much G-force going down. If super wet and not enough room and feet at the top....slippery when wet like grease. If you use imagination and probable physics if you could think that way?

  3. The owner had a belt across his chest as he went down with his boots on. Not a strap across the shoulder and gripping hand straps at side of raft. Who knows?binteresting videos look at them again yourself. You did a good job. Never noticed.

  4. All great points, CocoGaugin. The two women are still not speaking to the press, tho their family members are. We still do not know the seating order, either.

    Much of this data will be used by the attorneys and their expert witnesses. But that trial is years away, or worse yet, out of court settlements where nothing is disclosed, leaving the public in the dark...and the water park free to endanger more of the public as they learn basic principles of physics and employee training.

    I was just trying to sort out the two most obvious causes: physics and load distribution failures.


I will review your comment soon. If you are on topic and respectful without cursing, thank you in advance.