Welcome to Theme Park Overload! We have an update regarding the incident with the Superman: Ultimate Flight coaster at Six Flags Discovery Kingdom. Sunday at around 2:30 P.M. the new coaster stalled at the top of the structure, securing riders firmly in their seats for almost 2 hours. Luckily, the coaster train was upright, which eventually made it easier for the Vallejo city fire department to push the train back down the 150 ft spike into the station. Below is a news report from Sunday, explaining (and can I say OVER exaggerating) the situation.
The ride was immediately shut down by the park for a full investigation. It is believed that this was a computer error, and not a mechanical failure. Superman barely missed the one month operating mark, as it just opened on June 30.
Back at the ride's Media Event last month, I had the opportunity of talking with the people from Premier Rides, the designers behind this record breaking coaster. I actually questioned them on the launch system, specifically if the train was weighed before each launch to estimate the power needed and further prevent a situation like this. I was told by engineer Mark Treadwell that the trains were in fact not weighed, and the same amount of force is used for each launch. He also added that Premier Rides has never weighed the trains on any of their coasters. It is possible that we could see this feature added when the ride eventually does reopen as a safety precaution. This would also make it another "first" for Premier Rides, making this one-of-a-kind coaster even more unique!
(Below is an interview with Mark Treadwell back from the ride's opening)
As for when it will reopen. Their have been reports from park guests that the concrete foundation around the supports are cracking. I do not know how credible this info is, but I have heard the rumor from multiple sources. If this is in fact true, I wouldn't expect the coaster's opening to be for at least 2-3 weeks. But if it's just a rumor, I would estimate the Man of Steel to be up and running in about a week or so. That's all from Theme Park Overload for now! Be sure to scroll to the top of this page and enter your email in the sidebar to be notified of new headlines, including the 2013 announcements for all Six Flags parks nationwide next month! My name's Nicholous, and thank's for reading!
P.S. Check out a video below from the coaster's full opening day last month.