We watched with horror the events unfold at Alton Towers earlier this week, as someone who used to love thrill rides, I felt sick with what happened on The Smiler. We wish all the injured a speedy recovery, and are so deeply sorry for their injuries and trauma. We visited Alton Towers years ago, Rita Queen of Speed was the ride I chose with my eldest daughter, MeeMee who was then probably about 11. The other rides we went on were for the littlies.
I have been on The Big One at Blackpool – with MeeMee again, she was my partner in rides, and was only 7! She loved it.
We’ve been to Florida and, yes, MeeMee and I were the ones to ride Kraken and The Hulk, so we loved our big coasters.
We live minutes from Oakwood Theme Park, and have ridden, many times Speed and Megaphobia – until, sadly the park had its own accident, over ten years ago now, but a teenage girl sadly died on the ride that was called Hydro (now it is Drenched). She fell out of the carriage.
It was about then that my thirst for thrills slowed down, in fact, for a good while after, I got panicked at the thought of a ride.
I suppose I never got my thirst back, as a mum, and getting older, I think I saw more the risks involved, as a teen myself I would wait for the visiting fairground, and ride the biggest thrill ride they had! I wouldn’t now, nor would I let my children.
You see, there’s a risk in everything you do, I know that. But I think I’m past putting us at risk, unnecessarily. It’s scary how these accidents happen, and scarier when other rides / parks start closing until safety checks are updated ( or whatever the reason is.)
I’ve heard several, more minor incidents, with no injuries, thank goodness, such as rides stopping for no reason, and getting stuck.
I’ve also heard worryingly, that essential safety checks of rides has become less frequent due to financial cost of the staff to do so. I am not naming which park this is at, but I heard from a reliable source.
I used to very much believe that when ‘ your time is up, it’s up’ but I don’t know anymore.
I was looking at Chessington or Thorpe Park for our first visit this summer, but I don’t think I will now.
I’m not prepared to take the risk.