Apollo's Chariot E-Stop Results in Multiple "Injuries"

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Luke

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A Virginia Beach family visited a Williamsburg theme park over the weekend expecting to enjoy some roller coasters. Instead, Timolyn Tillman said, she, her husband and daughter left with concussions.

A Busch Gardens ride operator accidentally hit the emergency brake on Apollo’s Chariot, park spokesperson Ron Vample said.

About midway into the ride’s 4,882-foot track, Tillman said the ride came to what she described as a screeching halt.
“My whole body jolted,” she said. “I jerked forward and immediately backward, like a whiplash.”
For about 10 minutes, riders sat in pitch-black, she said.

A 9-year-old girl in the row behind Tillman began screaming for her mother, who was waiting on the ground below them, she said.
“She was screaming that we were going to die. I kept trying to turn around because she was in a panic. I was afraid she was going to wiggle out of her seat,” Tillman said.
Unlike several coasters at the park, Apollo’s Chariot locks riders in using a restraint on their lower half.
Tillman said after the coaster returned to the platform, she asked the ride operator about what happened.

“She told me she accidentally hit the emergency brake and the maintenance technician who was there said the same thing,” Tillman said.

“All guests were brought back into the ride station and safely exited the ride. The Busch Gardens team spoke with all guests, who were offered water and health services,” the theme park said in a statement given to The Pilot on Wednesday. “The safety of our guests and ambassadors remains our top priority.”

Tillman, an attorney at Liberty Law Group, said she began to experience some dizziness, lethargy and nausea Monday morning. That afternoon, her husband, Lance, and daughter, Alexandria Kimble, were diagnosed with concussions at Sentara Princess Anne Hospital. Busch Gardens spokesman Ron Vample declined to answer questions about the incident beyond the statement .

“We buy season passes every year,” Tillman said, “but I can say it will be a long time before I get on a roller coaster again.”
Source: https://pilotonline.com/news/local/article_68c48450-8ad9-11e8-bd29-778f4749d1dd.html
 
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Zachary

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This is the single biggest load of bullshit I've ever read. Apollo gets stopped at its mid-course sometimes... just like every other coaster in existence. No one gets a concussion from a mid-course brake run. It just doesn't happen.

WAVY has a similar story about the incident here. Here's a quote from that article:

However, Timolyn Tillman, a local lawyer in Virginia Beach, told 10 On Your Side a different story. He says his clients had back, neck and foot injuries, and concussions following the crash. He said no first aid was immediately offered, and "patrons had to jump through hoops to be seen by first aid."

Scratch what a said a moment ago. This is the single biggest load of bullshit I've ever read. How the fuck does someone get a foot injury on Apollo's Chariot? Did they stub their toe exiting the train once it returned to the station?
 
Last edited:
Mar 16, 2016
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Smells like the seafood department at a grocery store: Fishy.

Wanna claim whiplash? Ok. Concussion? No. That train had to go from at least 40 to a dead stop really fast to cause a concussion. Foot injuries? I’m 6’ with a 32” I swam and size 11 feet and I can barely touch the floor, let alone the car in front of me or the seat support under me. Either this was a family of fragile giants or the weakest constitutions in the world.

Also I got to praise BGWs First Aid. Last year on Nessie I banged my head good. Good kink in the neck. I was holding me neck coming off the ride and was in discomfort. By the time I was at the end of the exit there was a first aid person waiting for me to help.

So I’m claiming a hard BS on this.
 
Jul 15, 2011
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I agree on the BS about not offering aid. We were in line for verbolten in early june when a train came back with someone passed out on it. In a matter of seconds two supervisors were there checking on her and then one came and started checking on the people in the trains that were backing up asking if they were ok or needed water because of the heat. First aid came a few moments later and man they were hustling. There's no way in hell BGW didn't offer first aid. Also bs on the feet and concussion. No way. Sorry. Try another park and coaster because the physics just don't support it.
 
Jul 18, 2018
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For about 10 minutes, riders sat in pitch-black.
I’m assuming this was at night, in which case they weren’t burning up in the sun. Also, this article portrays being stopped on a ride for 10 minuets as an unbearable occurrence that only happens when something goes horribly wrong - which is true, except it’s not. 10 minuets is not a long time, and considering that the entire ride was completely shut down it goes to show how quickly the maintenance team responded.

I was afraid she was going to wiggle out of her seat.
That’s very thoughtful. The only problem is that’s not how seat restraints work.

...his clients had back, neck and foot injuries, and concussions following the crash.
(1) This is not a crash, (2) Next time before you ride, take time to understand what a roller coaster is and be prepared to experience the forces they exert. If this is the sort of BS we are going by, then I too had a concussion and neck injury the first time I rode Verbolten. It’s funny seeing the stupidity people broadcast because they want money.
 
Aug 9, 2017
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Oh man. Imagine if they had gone to Six Flags America instead and gotten stuck on Superman's lift hill - or Joker's Jinx last year.
 

lce

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Don't worry, now she is saying she hasn't been able to work since the incident, she has been having trouble formulating words.

I love this country. People are so intelligent and reasonable.
 

lce

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A quick visit to the law firm's website provides all you need to know. They practice in many areas, including personal injury. Enough said.
It's so twisted. I don't understand how people can feel content exploiting something like this park which handled the situation the best they could and showed they cared.

Busch's mistake was admitting the employee accidentally pushed the button.
 
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Mar 11, 2016
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Don't worry, now she is saying she hasn't been able to work since the incident, she has been having trouble formulating words.

I love this country. People are so intelligent and reasonable.
You forgot the emotional damage that occurred. But for a cool five million, it may assuage my anguish.
 
Aug 16, 2012
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Seeing this story reminds me when this happened on my lunch during Apollo's first year. Myself, the Ride Supervisor, and two others were walking back and we saw a train at the very top. The guy at controls hit the wrong button (the big red button you don't push unless you have too). The reason given was he thought he saw someone with a camera. That is fine but hit the stop lift button not the kill all power button.

Someone mentioned the 3rd train backup, I don't think this is where they were stopped. If the kill button, in mid ride, was pushed then they would have been stopped at the breaks just before going back over the river. At that point you are traveling much faster then having a sudden stop. Still believe this story is BS and someone is looking for a payday.
 
Apr 5, 2017
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Agree. The story mentioned being pitch black for 10 minutes. The brake stop before the station is darkish at night but not total darkness. Lots of light from festa Italia and the station there. The brake run mentioned above would better match the description in the story.
 
Mar 18, 2017
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Apollo throws you forward when recovering from the drops as it is. Not near as bad as the 2nd airtime hill of Superman at SFA (the SFNE version completely lacks the issue) but I do brace myself at times, I guess not on the block brake though. But I find it unlikely the brake there even comes close to some wild mouse brakes, or Flight of Fear's end brake run when lightly loaded. Unless the brake grabs like my first rides on Bizarro going back into the station, which was an instantaneous dead stop from 2 MPH. B&M, but something was wrong with it. The block brakes probably don't get a lot of maintenance since they don't get a much use.
 
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