Most dangerous theme park rides

Written by monica wachman Google
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Most dangerous theme park rides
Roller coasters are responsible for the largest proportion of theme park deaths. (Getty Images)

As thrill seekers flock to theme parks and local carnivals, the debate over the safety of high-speed rides continues. As technology advances, engineers are creating faster, more complicated rides that may or may not be safer than their earlier counterparts.

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Ride risks

Roller coasters account for about half of theme park deaths, followed by water thrill rides at 25 per cent, according to Insure. The remaining 25 per cent is spread out among other park venues.

Original Ferris wheel

Though tame by today's standards, the original Ferris wheel, built in 1893 for the Chicago World's Fair was a scary ride. At 86.6 m (284 feet) tall, when it was turned on for the first time, with riders, bolts came undone and it fell to the ground. No one was injured.

Cannonball Loop

Action Park in Vernon, New Jersey., which closed in 1996, had a water slide called the Cannonball Loop. It looped in a perfect circle, even though roller coaster engineers had already found that this type of design was too dangerous.

Alpine Slide

Action Park had another notorious ride, the Alpine Slide. Riders would take a ski-lift to the top of the hill and then ride down on hard-to-control, single-person sleds. Between 1984 and 1985, more than 24 head injuries and a dozen fractures occurred. One person died in 1980.

Human catapult

At the Middlemoor Water Park in the United Kingdom, a medieval style catapult would fling riders into a net 22.8 m (75 feet) away. A 19-year-old student was killed in 2002 when he missed the net.

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