Given recent news stories, we wanted to provide facts about our operations at Schlitterbahn Waterparks and Resorts
Q: Is Schlitterbahn safe?
Yes. In fact, Schlitterbahn and Schlitterbahn Kansas City have received accolades for our safety in the waterpark industry – and also in the amusement industry. We have 40 years of experience entertaining millions of visitors. Our lifeguards and operations team are noted for their vigilance, commitment, and attention to training. Safety and maintaining our rides have always been at the forefront of our culture.
Every attraction, from kiddie slide to uphill water coasters undergoes an internal and an independent third party inspection prior to the start of the season. Every ride is inspected daily prior to opening.
Q: Didn’t a jury decide that Schlitterbahn and the individuals are guilty?
Absolutely not. A grand jury is not like a jury in the way most people think of them in criminal cases. In Kansas, grand juries do NOT hear two sides. People accused in a grand jury proceeding do NOT get to present their side. Nor are they able to challenge information presented or cross-examine witnesses. In fact, people don’t even get to hear the evidence against them. The prosecutor controls all aspects of what gets presented and the standard for allowing an indictment to proceed is the LOWEST standard applied in law.
We look forward to our opportunity to present evidence in the weeks and months to come.
Q: Why were there hoops and netting on the ride?
Contrary to what you’ve read, hoops and netting are very common in waterparks. Hoops and netting are regular fixtures in uphill water coasters and are installed on water coasters around the world. They have been utilized in the industry for decades.
Q: Did anyone hide evidence?
Absolutely not. The allegation that anyone concealed or tampered with evidence is patently untrue. During the civil matter, attorneys involved noted that we cooperated fully, provided thousands of documents, and that nothing was withheld or tampered with.
Q: Was the construction or opening of the ride rushed?
The vast majority of quotes in the indictment are lifted directly from outtakes of a reality TV show that was scripted for dramatic effect and highly edited to create entertaining television. The reality TV show is not an accurate portrayal of the design and construction process.
Every project has a deadline, but the construction of the ride was delayed many times to allow for exhaustive testing and reconfiguration of the ride to maximize safety. We did not open it until it had been thoroughly tested.
Q: What are safety protocols at Schlitterbahn?
Safety is a core value of our operation. Staff members are empowered through training and example to be responsible for safety for themselves, other staff members, and guests. Team members are consistently supervised to ensure safe practices and programs from their first day and through the life cycle of employee.
One aspect of the safety program is the inspection of attractions. Every attraction, from kiddie elements to uphill water coasters, undergoes a thorough internal inspection as well as an independent third party inspection by a professional engineer prior to the start of each season. In addition, inspections are also conducted annually by our insurance provider. Parks are inspected in several areas by local municipal inspections such as food safety and water quality.
All attractions and areas of the parks are thoroughly inspected daily by supervisors and managers prior to opening. Preventative and routine maintenance is an ongoing component of our operation.
Team members attend regular trainings and symposiums to learn about the latest developments and techniques for safety, industry trends, and specialty training. Members of our leadership team participate with groups dedicated to safety in every area of our industry and have been invited to conduct seminars and training at other parks and symposiums.