The 2-minute Shockwave coaster carries passengers through a loop, a side spiral, and an inverted loop. Passengers straddle a bicycle-style seat, with their feet firmly on the platform.
An investigation revealed that the youth had engineered his own death by wriggling out of the harness so he could raise his hands in the air. During the first loop, his unrestrained body was thrown from the car to a catwalk, were they found him dead from a massive head wound.
I guess you could say he had the thrill of his life.
Do not duck under a roller coaster.
(1998, California) Tales of roller-coaster accidents are the stuff of nightmares. It turns out that such tragedies are less common than folklore would have us believe. In "The Science of Roller Coasters," Ted Oehmke reveals that there have been "only 42 such deaths in the last 11 years."
It is tempting to dwell upon whether the number 42 is a coincidence, or just exceedingly improbable. At any rate, such a fate was suffered by one particularly unfortunate middle-aged gentleman on the Top Gun coaster at Great America.
The recipient of this Darwin Award lost his red baseball cap on the ride. It flew into an area under the coaster. As if the danger of ground directly beneath a speeding roller coaster was not self-evident, there were prominent "Restricted Area" signs every fifty feet. After exiting the platform, the man ignored both common sense and warning signs. He climbed two fences to retrieve his hat, only to lose his head when a passenger's foot kicked his neck and derailed his plans.
The woman broke her leg and lost her shoe, and is suing for damages.