View Full Version : Kingda Ka had flames and sparks shooting out its train!

05-05-2006, 10:51 PM
I was at the park tonight (Friday 5-5-06) and El Toro looks good but
Kingda Ka had flames and sparks shooting out of one train.

I'm in the park as I write this. I was in line for front seat and 2 people in front of me when I heard this loud grinding sound when they launched an empty train.
People reported seeing "SPARKS AND FLAMES" coming out of the back.
The train made it over the top and stopped at the back of the station.

The operator said the ride was now closed down for the night.

So it's looks like it won't be running in the near future.

05-05-2006, 11:05 PM
This thread is worthless without pictures.

05-05-2006, 11:10 PM
Not that I doubt you pcman, but I need to see some concrete proof before I believe this.

05-05-2006, 11:12 PM
Where are the pics? If you were that close to getting on the ride, how did you not see it?

By the way I edited your post. There was no reason to use all caps! Try to use better English too.

05-05-2006, 11:14 PM
He didn't say he had a camera.

05-05-2006, 11:17 PM

uh oh, im going next week for the first time this year.

Ryan F
05-05-2006, 11:18 PM
how are you typing from in the park?

05-05-2006, 11:18 PM
I was there tonight, got on it around 8:30 and seemed to be running the entire night without problems.

05-05-2006, 11:32 PM
^^ Probably using a Blackberry or one of the other new phones that have *REAL* internet access stuff on them. Also could be a reason why the original post was in all caps, he might not be able to type anything other than that. :)

This must have been interesting. I'm sure pics will pop up somewhere soon.

05-05-2006, 11:34 PM
Wow. Sorry, GAdv peeps. Too bad, because I was thinking of coming up this weekend with my granddad...but I can wait if Ka's not gonna be open.

05-05-2006, 11:38 PM
HAHA. That blows for you people up North.

05-05-2006, 11:40 PM
Ya, I know, sucks to be them!...Oh damn, the Wizards lost. Sorry, random.

05-05-2006, 11:41 PM
Sucks for us....oh well, we will just have to settle for a top 10 steel coaster in Nitro, and arguably one of the best steel coaster lineups in the world, with a top 10 woodie coming in 3-4 weeks....sucks so bad ;)

05-05-2006, 11:44 PM
That's pretty cool.

05-05-2006, 11:48 PM
True, you still have them. But, still, no Ka...grrrr, that causes me to be stuck at home until Sunday! This does really suck. Oh well, I haven't hit BGE since...oh, about 2 hours ago:)

05-06-2006, 12:33 AM
^^ Probably using a Blackberry or one of the other new phones that have *REAL* internet access stuff on them. Also could be a reason why the original post was in all caps, he might not be able to type anything other than that. :)

This must have been interesting. I'm sure pics will pop up somewhere soon. I have a laptop and a Cingular 8125 phone that I can use by itself or hookup to my laptop at DSL speeds .
I was in the parking lot writing it on my laptop tethered to my 8125 cell phone.
I was inline next to load but I DID NOT HAVE MY CAMERA on me or my phone and if I did it happened so quick I would have no time to take a pic.
The coaster did make it over the top and returned to the back of the station where it sat.
Also I got a look at EL Toros infield when I got on KK earlier they have alot of bents up and sod laid on the ground.
GrtAdv still has a great coaster lineup.
Both chillers running tonight also.

Leo C
05-06-2006, 12:37 AM
If Kingda Ka really did that - WoW - it took off like a dragster. That bites if there is brake damage. I hope it's nothing that creates a mess of downtime like last year. PC knows the deal about posting in caps. He did it when he first joined this site. It may be his device and because he typed it as it happened in real time. I'll give him that and I haven't come across a point where he made up stuff. He's being doing good things on the coaster front here. I'd write in caps too maybe if something as crazy as that happened. I'd be bummed if the feat of riding both Kingda Ka and the Batman side of CHILLER in the same night has to be delayed yet again.

Flashing a camera while in line for Kingda Ka is not what riders would want to do. It's not allowed out on the ride so you'd want it in the locker, in your pocket, or tethered via carribeaner to your pants unless you want to get caught and sent to the lockers. There is the obstruction of the overhead walkway, the bend in the transfer track, cameras take too long to start up to catch this zip of action - it's probably only on GADV's camera.

05-06-2006, 12:51 AM
Where are the pics? If you were that close to getting on the ride, how did you not see it?

By the way I edited your post. There was no reason to use all caps! Try to use better English too. I didn't have my camera on me I left it in my truck since it would be dark out. I wish I did have it.
Sorry about the caps.
This is not like last year
this train did make it over the top .
I'm thinking something may have come loose under the train that was "dragging" during the launch but not enough to slow it down just enough to create heat.
After this happened it only took a few minutes for them to close the ride down.

05-06-2006, 06:54 AM
I don't know what to say about Kingda Ka at this point. I just hope they fix everything in a timely matter.

Leo C
05-06-2006, 08:04 AM
Cross your fingers for the ride to return quickly. Hopefully we'll hear positive reports soon.

05-06-2006, 09:04 AM
Ya, I really hope there's nothing real bad going on so it can re-open soon. Is anyone gonna go check it out today?

05-06-2006, 09:25 AM
It this really did happen, it won't be open today or for a little while depending on what the actual problem was. Maybe it was something along the lines of a cable snap, and people on Gadv.com are saying stuff about the catch car brakes possibly malfunctioning.

05-06-2006, 09:27 AM
Obviously, if this happened it won't be open today or probably tomorrow. But are any of you GAdv people gonna go today and have a peek?

05-06-2006, 09:29 AM
I'm not going. People wouldn't see much even if they did go. Mechanics trying to figure things out, and maybe a small crane to lift the catch car, if that infact is the problem.

Sir Willow
05-06-2006, 09:59 AM
OK people, lets think about this for a second here:

How on earth would there be flames and sparks coming out of the back of the train? There isn't anything on it that can burn or cause sparks. If somethign were to "fall off" and drag on the track to cause sparks, there's no way that train clears the tower- the brakes would stop it immediately. And flames? Impossible.

The train is attached to a catch car that pulls it along the track- the catch car being pulled by cables that run from the PLC. I'm thinking someone it taking "rocket coaster" a bit to literally.

There was some sort of breakdown (you can see it on the website), but it's nowhere near as dramatic as the original poster is making it sound.

05-06-2006, 10:09 AM
Yeah, it does say "Temporarily Closed" on the website.

05-06-2006, 10:13 AM
Yeah, I don't really get how the fins didn't come up. Even if there was a sensor problem, wouldn't an op press e-stop and wouldn't all of the brakes shoot up/close?

It's gotten off to a rough start already, hopefully it won't turn out like Dragster in it's first year (threatened to close it down for the season).

05-06-2006, 01:25 PM
So, did the brakes come up at all? If the brakes didn't come up after the train cleared the launch track, that would have been a HUGE problem.

05-06-2006, 01:51 PM
OK, I believe it now that I've read a few more reports. Flames are unlikely. There isn't anything on these coasters that will catch on fire. Sparks sound like the real story.

Apparently the catch car malfunctioned and crashed into the end of the launch track instead of stopping. If one of the wheels broke off the catch car, then I believe the sparks.

Flames? Naw. People are exaggerating. Remember the accident when two trains collided on Superman Ride of Steel at Six Flags New England? Eye wittnesses claimed that there was smoke coming off the train, yet the trains are made of fiberglass and metal.

05-06-2006, 02:02 PM
I think brakes came up there could have been contact between the brake fins and the train, causing sparks.

If the brakes did not come up then there could have been a catch car problem or a problem involving the undercarriage of the train.

I think it's all just a guessing game, but if the ride is closed then I think guessing is all we've got to keep us busy.

What a mess.

05-06-2006, 02:30 PM
^ If there was contact between the brake fins and the train, I doubt it would have made it over the top hat as it did.

05-06-2006, 03:02 PM
From GadvUpdates:

what happened was that the teal side was sent out they both launched, when the two returned (at 9.25). A guy on the teal train started saying he lost his cell phone on the ride. Well at this point they sent out the orange train, it went through the course but did not advance off the switch track at the back of station. then finally they got it in to the station, lauch whats known as a blank launch (a launch with no trains). then they sent the teal side out to test (9.45) at this point is when you heard the loud screech. according to what we were told as leaving the station. when the cell phone fell out it fell onto the launch track and hit the catch car and some sensors, it caused the computers to say there were trains waiting to be launched. there was no damage to the brake fins, but there may be damage to the cable, catch car, and sensor. this is why they tell you to secure all loose articles.

ps: i will update everybody on sunday.

Jerry S
05-06-2006, 03:10 PM
I think they should charge the guy who lost his cell phone to fix the ride. :P

Wait, so were there people on the trains when this thing happened?

I didn't really enjoy Ka last time I rode, so I won't mind that it's gone either. The only problem would be longer lines on Chillers, Nitro, and Superman.

05-06-2006, 03:13 PM
...And El Toro if KK is not fixed but ET's opening. Why do peope have to be 'cool' and hold their cell phone while they ride? Shmuck.

05-06-2006, 03:50 PM
No Jerry. The train launched with people. Train comes back and guy says "my phone fell out". Ride breaks down after that run, so they test it. Test ride launches and sparks fly.

05-06-2006, 04:32 PM
I feel bad for the guy who lost his cell phone... :)

05-06-2006, 04:36 PM
I don't. Follow the rules and stuff like that won't happen and you won't break a $25 Million ride.

05-06-2006, 05:07 PM
As cell phone gets crushed "Can you hear me MAWAHAOIDHSAAAAAW"

05-06-2006, 05:08 PM
At least Batman the Chiller is back and running great.

Matt M
05-06-2006, 05:23 PM
Sucks for us....oh well, we will just have to settle for a top 10 steel coaster in Nitro, and arguably one of the best steel coaster lineups in the world, with a top 10 woodie coming in 3-4 weeks....sucks so bad ;)

Try being arrogent when you have something to brag about.

05-06-2006, 05:29 PM
I don't know what to believe but GAdvUpdates is pretty reliable.

^ It wasn't arrogant, maybe you didn't catch the sarcasm.

Matt M
05-06-2006, 06:16 PM
Friction makes things toasty warm/meltable.

05-06-2006, 07:26 PM
You can get a small flame from a piece of metal with enough friction if only for a brief moment.
I just hope the King is back up and running soon.

Jerry S
05-06-2006, 08:07 PM
^^ It didn't seem sarcastic at all. I mean, the fact that it "sucks" was sarcastic, but I also don't think we can brag about Nitro and El Toro. I don't like Nitro as much as I like Apollo's Chariot. Or even Medusa.

Leo C
05-06-2006, 08:27 PM
Basically there's no need to complain. There is more than enough coaster to pleasure us all @ SFGADV whether NITRO is 1 & 2 with Medusa - whatever. The mix as a whole is a very good variety.

I hope we hit the spot next week and walk into an El Toro testing once or twice a day during the weekend. Would love to have video testing footage soon.

05-07-2006, 01:35 AM
Cell Phone: $400
SFGADV Ticket: $35
Parking: $10

Having your cellphone break down a record breaking coaster because you were being a douche: Priceless.

There are some things money can't buy, like common sense, for most everything else, there's Mastercard.

05-07-2006, 08:59 AM
^ Haha, that was funny. If only Shapiro had prices like that though. $15 for parking and $60 for a ticket.

This picture by Stew560 on Gadv.com shows that it was not infact a cable snap:

05-08-2006, 06:30 PM
How long of a wait is it going to be till they get the beast back up and running, and will the state have to reinspect it like last years inccident

05-08-2006, 06:41 PM
^ I don't think anybody knows how long it will be out for until we truly know what caused the problem. I assume the state will have to come and re-inspect the ride before it can be cleared for the public to ride again.

05-08-2006, 06:48 PM
Well that blows, because we all know that New Jersey sucks when it comes to getting things like that done. Their just a bunch of A holes out to piss people off

05-08-2006, 09:21 PM
I asked 4 different workers yesterday, they said it's dowen for a month, until June at least...

05-09-2006, 08:32 AM
This sucks. When I go next Wednesday, this will be the 2nd year in a row that I am taking my students to GrAdv, and I won't be able to ride KK. The day I went last year was the day they were filming for the commercial.

05-09-2006, 03:02 PM
^STOP GOING!!! YOU'RE A JINX!!! Just kidding... I'm really mad though, I can't believe it broke...again.

Kevin Winkler
05-10-2006, 10:40 PM
I'm really mad though, I can't believe it broke...again.

Ehh, Its an Intamin....what actually made you think it would be reliable?

Think of it as a mid-90's Hyundai

05-11-2006, 02:14 AM
Does anyone have an idea if the guy who lost his phone is in any kind of trouble or responsibility for this?

Far-fetched I guess but I was just wondering.

05-11-2006, 02:32 AM
A little update...

Damage was minor

There was no damage to the coaster train or any area normally occupied by guests.

This incident has absolutely nothing at all to do with what happened last year.

No info yet on a possible opening but it doesn't sound like its all that bad.

Info from here:

Canobie Coaster
05-15-2006, 06:56 AM
The person who dropped the phone should be in trouble if they need to repair any damage. Maybe Six Flags might make him join their wonderful staff :rolleyes:.

05-15-2006, 11:59 AM
I think they(the industry) should build more "Millenium Force Type" coasters
I'm sure they can do 350' - 400' + .
It's less complicated to operate and MF is one of the Top rated coasters out there.

05-15-2006, 12:36 PM
Whoever let the guy ride with a loose cell phone needs to be strangled. lol

How stupid can you be though to go on a 456ft, 128mph coaster and not leave your cell phone on the ground. Or at least in your pocket.

05-15-2006, 12:42 PM
The problem is very loose pants/shorts.
I always put my sunglasses,phone and or camera in my front pocket and my shorts are not the "baggy relaxed" type.
I keep my baggy shorts at home.
I normally where denium shorts.
A few weeks ago I found a $5 bill on Nitro front seat when I went to sit down it must have came out of the persons pocket after they got up.

05-15-2006, 09:19 PM
Kingda Ka's cable has reappeared, but it is slack:

05-15-2006, 09:28 PM
Atleast it is not down all Summer! I rode it last year! It is awesome!

05-15-2006, 09:39 PM
Maybe there's a possibilty of it opening this week?

05-16-2006, 07:45 AM
The problem is very loose pants/shorts.
I always put my sunglasses,phone and or camera in my front pocket and my shorts are not the "baggy relaxed" type.
I keep my baggy shorts at home.
I normally where denium shorts.
A few weeks ago I found a $5 bill on Nitro front seat when I went to sit down it must have came out of the persons pocket after they got up.

Yeah, I guess I'm asking too much for people to use common sense. lol

Hopefully it won't cost the park a bundle to fix.

05-16-2006, 02:31 PM
Industry experts do say that people lock their brains in the trunk when they go to an amusement park...

05-16-2006, 03:29 PM
^Nice quote

I guess it is a good thing that the cable is back on. I just really hope it opens before or with ET.

-American Viper
05-16-2006, 05:21 PM
Wow, theey want to get this up and open really soon. Does anyone know what will happen to the guy whos cell phone caused this? He probably went to Lost & Found and wanted his phone back, but can't he face charges of some kind?

05-16-2006, 09:40 PM
May 5, 2006

http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/en/thumb/0/02/Current_event_marker.png/50px-Current_event_marker.png (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Image:Current_event_marker.png)This section documents a current event (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Current_events).
Information may change rapidly as the event progresses.http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/8/8b/Stop_hand.svg/30px-Stop_hand.svg.png (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Image:Stop_hand.svg)
The neutrality (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wikipedia:Neutral_Point_of_View) of this section is disputed (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wikipedia:NPOV_dispute).
Please see discussion on the talk page (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Talk:Kingda_Ka).

On May 5 (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/May_5), 2006 (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/2006), about a month after it opened for the 2006 season, Kingda Ka experienced another major malfunction, although probably not as severe as the 2005 one.
At 9:25 PM, after a normal launch, one of the riders on the teal train reported losing his cell phone on the ride. The orange train was launched at this point, which completed the course but briefly got stuck on the switch track at the station's entrance. After this, the launch system was tested with a "blank launch", a launch with no train.
At 9:45 PM, The teal train was launched in a test run. There was reportedly a loud screech and bang and sparks flying out from the back of the train, which cleared the tower. The anti-rollback brakes at the beginning of the launch track did not pop back up behind the launching train, but the ones at the end did, possibly while the train was still over them. Had the train rolled back, this would have caused a catastrophic accident if not enough brakes had been up to sufficiently slow down the train.
Kingda Ka went into emergency stop mode as the accident was occurring, causing the retractable brakes at the end of the brake run to stay up, so the train to get stuck in this section for about a minute before advancing into the station.
Kingda Ka's launch cable was witnessed to be tight and appartently in fine condition shortly after the accident. On May 11th it had been removed, and on May 16th it was back. The train is reportedly undamaged. The loud bang was the catch car hitting the stopper at the end of the launch track at full speed. The exact cause of the breakdown is unknown, but maintenance technicians were working on it the weekend of the breakdown.

I found this on Wikipedia, obviously, and there was stuff from the previous break down too.
CD28, you're certainly not the only one who hopes that, it will either help cut down El Toro's line, or have no line at all, line-free rides on KK opening weekend of El Toro! lol

05-16-2006, 09:44 PM
It really scare me to think what could have happened if it rolled back. KK would probably never operate again if it rolled back with the brakes down. Thank God nobody was one the train or hurt.

05-16-2006, 09:56 PM
The brakes operated normally. People were saying that the brake fins did not raise, but that in fact didn't happen. It's near impossible for those brakes not to raise as their default position is up, meaning that if the ride was to completely fain in every way imaginable, those brakes will pop up.

05-16-2006, 10:49 PM
Per Wikipedia
Information may change rapidly as the event progresses.http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/8/8b/Stop_hand.svg/30px-Stop_hand.svg.png (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Image:Stop_hand.svg)
The neutrality (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wikipedia:Neutral_Point_of_View) of this section is disputed (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wikipedia:NPOV_dispute).
Please see discussion on the talk page (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Talk:Kingda_Ka).

Just info they got from "These coaster sites"
Wikipedia does not represent Six Flags

I personally don't think a phone had anything to do with it
but its possible

05-22-2006, 06:45 PM


05-22-2006, 07:05 PM
Great News! At least it wasn't as servere as last season. w00t!

Jerry S
05-22-2006, 07:16 PM
^^^With such a quick recovery, I think a phone may have infact been the case. But they'll only rund green and orange now. Dark Blue and Light Blue are down I'm guessing.

05-26-2006, 06:41 AM
Kingda Ka officially re-opened yesterday and it was taking passengers (http://www.gainsider.com/gallery/images/052506ka1.jpg) all day long, despite some breakdowns.

03-05-2007, 10:17 AM
I very highly doubt that the brake fins of the launch section didn't raise. They're failsafe (normal position is up) and get lowered by pneumatic cylinders. There is a failsafe timeout control which automatically raises the fins after some delay after each start.

The cell phone theory does not seem very realistic from an engineering POV. Mechanically, a cell phone can't cause much damages (beside hitting someone). If a cell phone gets caught in some mechanism it is likely to be immediately crushed and debris would be too small to cause damages or even block wheels of a catch car. If a cell phone falls on an inductive proximity switch, which is extremely unlikely to happen from as statistical POV, it may or may not cause a spurious signal but as the metal mass of a cell phone is very low and as there are few magnetic materials (regular inductive proximity switches are optimized to detect steel) the spurious trip probability is again lowered. EMI/RFI (electromagnetic and radio frequency interferences) due to the cell phone should not cause problems if the system is well designed. And even if a spurious signal is detected by the control there are various redundant sensors and minimal signal durations which are evaluated in order to avoid misfunctions. Technically speaking the whole cell phone theory does not seem very realistic.

03-05-2007, 10:46 AM
Thanks for bringing back a thread that's been dead since May.

03-05-2007, 01:02 PM
Hmmm.. Sorry. Didn't know that it was not allowed. You can delete my other message(s). I just thought it would be interesting to add some more formal technical comments as there are always a lot of wrong assumptions floating around when it comes to incidents.

03-05-2007, 03:56 PM
Wes, chill. He just joined yesterday and his post wasn't even spam. It was actually rather informative.

Sir Willow
03-05-2007, 08:12 PM
Yes, it was informative, and I apreciate that. But it would be even nicer if it was actually in response to a topic that's currently being discussed rather than resurrecting one that's been left behind a long time because it's already been discussed and is a done deal.

There's not any real reason to resurrect long dead threads like this, unless, say, for example it was the results of a new investigation into this accident. It's not.

Love the input, just would much rather that it was about something current.

03-14-2007, 06:30 PM
You guys are jerks. The man is new, much like me. I only heard stories about TN up until now and I see that the lore is true.

03-14-2007, 08:42 PM
I read all replies in this thread and there are quite some inconsistencies. People often tend to report inaccurately, especially if things happen quickly. Also I haven't seen many valid assumptions, I mean valid considering a formal incident investigation approach. E.g. if intense sparking and smoke emissions are possible (due to overheated lubricants) effective flames are not as there are no embarked highly inflammable gases or liquids (and BTW flammable liquids don't burn themselves, only the gases they form do). Also a brake fin functional failure would have requested a complete reassessment of the safety integrity and it's close to impossible that such a major failure can occur. The reason I posted was also to relativize the effect of a lost cell phone. Of course I was not there so it is just my conclusion from an engineering POV.

Leo C
03-14-2007, 10:12 PM
The topic was beat to a horse last year so that is why it seemed a little annoying to come back so soon. We thought the hatchet was buried. It is interesting though to see what new members have to add in realization and analysis of previous situations. If many of us jumped to conclusions: I don't see why we wouldn't since some of us are almost blood thirsty in our enthusiast love of our rides, especially the hottest ride of that year and which sets the new pinnacle for the genre. Anyway the type of guests that come to such park make it reasonable for a phone to fall on the track. Whether it's heavy or thin enough to jam the ride; sure that could be likely or unlikely. It's good for an engineering debate. We just really killed this thread to not liking it now I suppose. The months of downtime that the breakdown created was really that bad I guess. We have a love for our hobby and this site but we have to let some threads slide and die so a new "magazine issue" worth of threads come up. Hitting "Search" to get old topics is appreciated. How ironic but it is what it is. Eventually things will be alright and continue to be interesting. Welcome to Thrillnetwork.

03-15-2007, 08:35 AM
If they dont want stuff brought back they should ARCHIVE it. Make it not touchable. How should any of us new people know if there is an unwritten rule that a thread should not be brought back. This is completely rediculous. You guys bashed Vallean for no reason whatsoever.

03-27-2007, 09:29 PM
I have to go ride this ride. All the talk about it makes it seem like somethin that I HAVE TO EXPERIENCE.