Tuesday, September 23, 2003

Top Thrill Dragster Cars Recalled Due to Fuel Tank Problem

In news that stunned the amusement industry, Intamin today announced a recall of all Top Thrill Dragster trains due to fuel tank safety issues uncovered in standard government testing.

"It's the darndest thing," said company spokesman Julie Harding. "We didn't even remember that we'd put a fuel tank in there -- I guess we just got a little too excited with the theming."

According to officials from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, the Dragster's forty-gallon fuel tanks, which are attached to nothing, are prone to leakage and, if involved in a rear-end collision, could explode. No reports of injuries have occurred, but the recall is still being treated as the highest priority. The design flaw was found in the NHTSA's routine crash testing.

Cedar Fair head Richard Kinzel described the potential explosions as a "minor issue." "Really, who doesn't have problems like this with a new ride? I totally understand why Intamin included a forty-gallon tank of flammable liquid on trains that do not in fact have engines -- just a little quirk of having one of the most advanced rides on the planet!"

In the meantime, a small but vocal group of enthusiasts have started an advocacy group lobbying Cedar Fair to place the fuel tanks on Mean Streak's trains along with several lit acetylene torches.
Canada's Wonderland Announces Flying Coaster Upgrade

The mighty voice of tens and tens of enthusiasts made itself heard again this week, as Paramount Canada's Wonderland, possibly the most awkwardly-named park on the planet, announced major changes to its new Zamperla/Volare flying coaster, called, in a spasm of creativity, "The Flying Coaster."

"We heard a lot of people didn't like the one at Elitch Gardens," said spokesman Jonathan Selby. "So we've really improved this one."

Chief among the improvements, according to Selby, is the improved station music. "We've gotten rid of the stuff that Zamperla encouraged us to use, like that 'I Believe I Can Fly' crap. Instead, we've got some good Canadian music from Bryan Adams, Paul Anka, and Celine Dion. Oh, and Bachman Turner Overdrive. The kids these days love that BTO!"

Also improved are the colors of the trains. "No more orange track!" exclaimed Selby. "We now have green track! It will be much better."

When asked if Zamperla had made any modifications to the design of the coaster itself, Selby looked puzzled. "Why would they? That coaster rules. It just needed some minor cosmetic changes."