Sounds pretty dangerous, huh? It actually isn't! I can PROVE that this JUMPING ROLLER COASTER is absolutely as safe as any that are permanently attached to a track!
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From a business perspective, imagine how popular (and profitable) that ride would be! So, why hasn't anyone built such a thing? Because no one has figured out a way to make it absolutely safe!
I actually invented this in 1990, and immediately tried to get an audience with Disney World, Six Flags over Great America, and others. No one even wanted to waste his or her time to listen to a presentation. As I was told by Disney and Great America representatives, they had PLENTY of the SMARTEST designers already working for them, and if it was a good idea, THEY would think of how to do it! (Seems pretty arrogant to me!)
Well, it's a number of years later! I don't see any Jumping Roller Coasters anywhere! I'm sure their engineers are smart enough. Maybe they're not just creative enough to design a SAFE version of such a ride.
I considered explaining just how it works and why it is so safe. I decided not to. For two reasons. One, if one is eventually built some day, the riders would prefer the added mystery of apparently life-threatening danger. After all, every rider would experience more than a full second of Space-Shuttle-like weightlessness during his or her flight. They WOULD be subject to being jostled a little on landing into the "catcher chute", because varying wind conditions and weight loads will slightly affect the flight path.
The other reason why I am not going to disclose all the secrets of how it would work here is related to the way I was treated when I went to the trouble of offering those amusement park operators a new and unique attraction that would CERTAINLY have made them huge amounts of money. If they, or anyone else, has interest in building one, THEY can now come to ME! Seems fair!
If they choose not to, let THEM try to figure out how to do it safely. I don't think they can! But that would be their choice!
For you roller coaster riders who would crave a new and unique experience, I guess you'll have to wait for now!
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C Johnson, Theoretical Physicist, Physics Degree from Univ of Chicago