Six Flags over Texas Former Employee Forum  


Go Back   Six Flags over Texas Former Employee Forum > Other Stuff > Disney Parks

Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
  #1  
Old July 5th, 2009, 08:30 PM
cleusk's Avatar
cleusk cleusk is offline
General Manager
 
Join Date: Dec 2006
Location: Dallas
Posts: 5,882
Default Monorail Accident

At WDW, two monorails collided into each other. The details can be found HERE
Reply With Quote
  #2  
Old July 5th, 2009, 08:31 PM
ElbieSee ElbieSee is offline
Blue Tag
 
Join Date: Dec 2008
Location: Oklahoma
Posts: 132
Default

My daughter was there a week ago.
Reply With Quote
  #3  
Old July 5th, 2009, 11:56 PM
VanceCope VanceCope is offline
General Manager
 
Join Date: Jun 2006
Posts: 1,460
Default

I'm surprised it took so long for someone to post it here...I've been following the story all day (well since I woke up at 10) but I didn't even think about putting it here...there's a video that was taken minutes after the crash that is a little disturbing so I'll let you find the link on your own if you're interested...it doesn't show anything, but once you know the story you know that trapped in that mangled mess is the poor pilot that died...possibly even still alive at that point...it's only about a minute because one of the cast members on the dock went after the guy with the camera telling him to stop filming...i'm really interested in what the report is going to say when it comes out...there are so many safety checks in place that there was either a major computer malfunction or a terrible human error...from what i've read on a couple of different sites (news and disney fan site ones)...and of course they could be wrong too... I think it's going to come out that it was human error on the part of the pilot that wasn't killed and/or the person that was in (or possibly out of) the monorail control tower....that he overrode the safety warning (which they are allowed to do at certain times which I found weird)
and the other pilot either didn't have time to react to his control panel warning him, never got a warning and couldn't see the other train, or just didn't know what to do about it...whatever happend it's a tragic accident and my thoughts go out to the Wuennenberg family and all of Austin's friends
Reply With Quote
  #4  
Old July 6th, 2009, 10:46 AM
VanceCope VanceCope is offline
General Manager
 
Join Date: Jun 2006
Posts: 1,460
Default

UPDATE:

According to the Orlando Sentinal and a WDW website that I think is fairly reliable (Mouseplanet.com) the cause of the accident was was basically human error and errors in basic safety (my words not theirs). Appearantly Monorail Pink (MPI) was trying to transfer from the EPCOT line to the Magic Kingdom Express line. To do so, the monorail has to move out of the TTC station past a switch then back up thru the station and all the way back to the maintence switch on that line to get to the roundhouse (which, as a side note, is located directly above the round house for the engines...its kinda cool seeing these two vastly diffrent trains sharing the same space). After MPI went forward and cleared the safety checkpoints (blocks for the coaster folks) Monorail Purple (MPU) pulled into the station. At that point MPI got notification that it was clear to reverse and did so thinking that it was backing onto an empty express line with no trains behind it so it the pilot overrode the safety alarms (which they are allowed to do when backing up thru the switches) and throttled up to about 15 mph. MPU was unable to see the other train coming due to curve in the track outside the station and the lack of light, and I'm just assuming this part, since he was in the station wasn't behind his panel to notice the other train backing his way until it was to late to do anything.

Upon reading this info I thought it was weird that Disney allows the monorails to back up without a pilot in the back of the train. We were always told that if we had the coaches attached and were backing up we had to have a conductor back there so they could hit the big hole in case of an emergency. I guess they thought that with all of the sensors and computer monitoring that you wouldn't need a pilot on the front and back to change lines. Perhaps this will change due to this accident. Unfortunatly, it also falls back on the person in the control booth (if there was even someone in there, I've heard they may not have been) that was A. Suppose to switch the track and B. Gave the clearence to come back when the track wasn't empty. I guessing fatigue played a big factor in the accident as it was 2am on one of the busiest days at WDW and the operator got confused or misread the screen. I've never seen the the main control screen for the monorails so maybe I'm over assuming, but I would think that it would have info/position about evey monrail out on the lines, the placement of the switches, etc.

The monorails are back up and running today, supposdly with new safety protocalls in place and new sensors on the switches and station checkpoints. This was the first major accident in the 38 year history of the monorail at WDW...hopefully it will be there last.
Reply With Quote
  #5  
Old July 6th, 2009, 12:55 PM
C Heenan C Heenan is offline
Gold Tag
 
Join Date: May 2006
Location: Magnolia, Texas
Posts: 420
Default

Hopefully there will never be another accident like this, but my guess is that of all the sections on the track this one will become the safest after this incident. Everybody will remember what happened and the series of errors that allowed the accident, and I'll bet that whenever another train makes a similar move there will be something approaching a level of paranoia as the switch happens. After we were almost hit once by a train backing back down the hill by the flume I NEVER took my eyes off the track on that curve again.

I'm not really familiar with the way electric trains can be interlocked, but I'd like to know how much redundancy is involved in allowing a train to move against some sort of alarm. If an engineer can make a solo decision to ignore an alarm without somebody in the control tower also simultaneously doing something to allow it, it really does seem to defeat the purpose of the system.

Is there some super unoverridable safety feature connected to the process of throwing their track switches. It seems to me that there would be a big potential for trouble there since moving through an open switch could land an entire train on the ground below.
Reply With Quote
  #6  
Old July 8th, 2009, 11:03 PM
VanceCope VanceCope is offline
General Manager
 
Join Date: Jun 2006
Posts: 1,460
Default

UPDATE: According to a report from the NTSB, the pilot of MPU realized that there was a problem and tried reversing before he was hit by MPI which may have prevented the six guests that were on the train from being injured.

Also an interview appearing in the Orlando Sentinal with an apparent cast member says that the person that was in the monorail control booth had gone home sick and left the manger on duty in control, but when the accident happened that manager may have been completely away from the station, not just the booth, at a restraunt and was running things via radio. It also states though that the monorail shop, not the control booth, controls the switches and would have been the one in charge of making sure that the switch had been moved onto the correct rail and also has a control screen with an E-stop button they also could have cut the power to the whole monorail line if they had noticed that the train was on the wrong line. Lastly at least one person on the platform should be wearing a "power kill pack" (think mobile Estop) and that they also would have the power to kill the power if they saw the train coming the wrong way on the track. That's 3 estops to kill all of the power on the whole monorail system and stop the trains pretty much were they stood (except for braking distance) and not one of them was pushed.

One question I still have is how did the driver on MPI not realize he was on the wrong track? First you have your screen telling you your position, so the fact that you were on the same line you were just on, and not the one that your suppose to be on should have been a big clue. Two, you pull toward the switch you have track on one side of you (lets just say left), and then once you back up thru the switch the rail should be on the right side...if its still on the left you have a problem

As of right now they are saying there were no mechanical problems with any of the systems so there must have been a true breakdown of communication and lack of attention for this accident to happen.
Reply With Quote
  #7  
Old July 9th, 2009, 10:07 AM
JABBS JABBS is offline
Platinum Tag !
 
Join Date: Apr 2005
Location: Bedford
Posts: 645
Default

Wow. You do realize that there is a person involved in this incident that isn't able to do that, right?
__________________
Bryan Burgess
Rides 92-95, Operations Supe 95-98
Reply With Quote
  #8  
Old July 9th, 2009, 10:19 AM
Indiswish Indiswish is offline
Blue Tag
 
Join Date: Dec 2005
Posts: 106
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by cleusk View Post
Words of wisdom concerning this situation - Learn from your mistakes. Let it go. And move on with your life.
Unless you're dead! Not words of wisdom at all!
Reply With Quote
  #9  
Old July 9th, 2009, 11:02 AM
cleusk's Avatar
cleusk cleusk is offline
General Manager
 
Join Date: Dec 2006
Location: Dallas
Posts: 5,882
Default

Oops! Bad phrasing!
Reply With Quote
  #10  
Old July 9th, 2009, 11:49 AM
VanceCope VanceCope is offline
General Manager
 
Join Date: Jun 2006
Posts: 1,460
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by cleusk View Post
Words of wisdom concerning this situation - Learn from your mistakes but don't dwell on them.
I had a problem with your orginal words (as seen in Indiswish post) but I let it go...I think these may be worse...they (Disney and everyone involved) need to dwell on them and never forget them so that it never happens again
Reply With Quote
Reply

Bookmarks

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off



All times are GMT -5. The time now is 07:01 AM.


Search the SFOT Site with Google...


Loading


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.9
Copyright ©2000 - 2019, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
SFOT.NET and the associated content on these pages are not affiliated or otherwise associated as an entity with Six Flags over Texas, inc. Images and content are used with permission or original content of SFOT.net.