Remembering The ‘World’s Most Dangerous Amusement Park’

Amusement park safety has been a hot topic this summer. After a deadly fall from a Six Flags roller coaster in July, even minor injuries have been making headlines. But are amusement parks really as dangerous as they used to be? A new documentary sheds light on what Mashable is calling “The World’s Most Dangerous Amusement Park,” a New Jersey waterpark called Action Park that closed in 1996. Inside this lawless park, which seemed to be staffed mostly by intoxicated teenagers, were nonsensical attractions like:

  • The “Cannonball Loop” slide, which had a complete loop at the end.
  • A winding cement track called the “Alpine Slide” that children barreled down on carts while people tried to spit on them from a chairlift that ran above it.
  • A rope swing called “Tarzan swing” where men regularly exposed themselves to onlookers.

Seriously, is this place for real? We went to Twitter to do some investigating, and found many people recalling-and even lamenting-their injuries at the park:

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Ouch, sounds painful. Although these people walked away with minor injuries, at least seven people died at Action Park during its existence. Watch the first half of the documentary above, and the second half after the jump.
The Most Insane Amusement Park Ever – Part 2 of 2 by insane-amusement-park

Scientists Explain Veggies Suffer Jet Lag, Too

Humans aren’t the only ones whose internal clocks get all out of whack when they fly. It looks like vegetables also feel the effects of jet lag, which happens when our light and dark cycles are thrown off. Toward the end of this factoid-filled video from Mashable there’s a longer explanation, plus a silly skit about a jet-lagged eggplant. And here’s a report from NPR that explains how scientists are using this knowledge to coax vegetables into producing more beneficial compounds.

Toying with the idea of conducting an experiment of your own? Make sure you follow the rules of the Transportation Security Administration, or any other international agency, before bringing any food on board a plane or across borders. Carrot circadian clocks aside, here are some tips from Gadling readers that might help you ward off jet lag on your next trip.

Forget Segways, Electric Skateboards Are The New Way To Explore

Courtesy Boosted Boards.

Too cool for a Segway tour? No need to worry, battery-powered skateboards will soon be on the market thanks to a new company called Boosted Boards.

Less bulky than bikes, these boards have the potential to change the way people explore cities. They can be carried anywhere – including on airplanes – allowing people to stop and go as they please (and easily hop off to bypass obstacles like stairs). A handheld remote control allows the rider to control the speed and brakes, so all the rider has to do is worry about balancing and avoiding barriers.

The battery lasts for about six miles, and when its time to recharge, the board just needs to be plugged into a normal wall outlet for 15 minutes (at that rate, it means about a dollar of electricity can power one of these skateboards for more than 600 miles). And if you’re worried about oomph, consider this: the boards have so much gusto they can climb up the hills of San Francisco at 20 mph.

More than 1,100 people got behind the boards on Kickstarter, where inventors reeled in more than four times the money they needed to launch. Boosted Boards is now accepting pre-orders for the new mode of transport, which the company plans to deliver in winter 2013.

[via Mashable and TED talks]

FAA To Relax Rules On In-Flight Electronic Use

Here’s some good news for air travelers: The New York Times is reporting the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) may soon loosen its rules around the use of electronics during takeoff and landing.

The change, however, will not affect cellphone use. Instead, it applies to reading devices such as iPads and Kindles.

Anonymous employees at an industry group the FAA set up last year told the news outlet the governmental agency is under tremendous pressure to either allow use of these types of devices, or provide significant evidence why they cannot be used. According to multiple sources, there is no proof these types of devices affect a plane’s avionics.

According to the report, the group has been meeting with key companies, including Amazon and the Consumer Electronics Association, since January. It’s likely the FAA could make an announcement about the relaxed rules by the end of the year.

The group also told The New York Times that the FAA hopes to replace multiple regulations with a single, concise set.

Missouri Senator Claire McCaskill said she planned to hold the agency accountable by introducing legislation surrounding the new rules.

“So it’s OK to have iPads in the cockpit; it’s OK for flight attendants – and they are not in a panic – yet it’s not OK for the traveling public,” Senator McCaskill told The New York Times in a phone interview. “A flying copy of ‘War and Peace’ is more dangerous than a Kindle.”

[Via: Mashable]

[Photo credit: Flickr user Don Fulano]

Win free travel on Social Media Day

Social Media DayThe second annual Social Media Day is tomorrow. A worldwide celebration of the revolution of media becoming social, meetings are scheduled around the world. It’s all about sharing, engaging and interacting and some hotels and resorts are offering deals, amenities, free nights, and even trip giveaways through different social media interactions.

Here’s how it works. Check each one of the properties listed below. Each has a different offer, done a different way. Some require simply visiting the properties Facebook page and liking them, others require a tweet or that you pay attention to their Twitter feed for special offers throughout the day. Setting up a special list on Twitter (I have one called “deals”) then adding a Tweetdeck column or simply paying attention to email alerts can give you a heads up for what to do or say. There are usually a few surprises mixed in these things so take a look at six reasons to stay wired on this day:

1) Sandpearl Resort / www.facebook.com/ClearwaterFlorida
Facebook users who “like” Sandpearl and post a photo of themselves on property (tagging Sandpearl Resort in their photo), receive 25% off an Ice Cream pedicure at the Spa. (must be booked on Social Media Day, but can be redeemed on a future date)

2) San Juan Marriott / www.facebook.com/sanjuanmarriott / @sanjuanmarriott
Keep an eye on the San Juan Marriott’s Facebook page and Twitter feed for offers throughout the day. The resort will be posting and sharing special “Social Media Day Only” offers such as free upgrades, complimentary drinks and value-added amenities.

3) Aruba Marriott Resort & Stellaris Casino / @arubamarriott
Follow @ArubaMarriott on Twitter and on June 30, tweet the message: “Tweet me with a trip to @ArubaMarriott #SMDay” for an entry in to a drawing for a 3 night/4 day stay for two.

4) Marriott Costa Rica Collection / www.facebook.com/marriottcostarica
Post a photo of something you find beautiful in Costa Rica (for example, a sunset, a tonka tree, a scarlet macaw, ziplining, etc.) Then get your friends to “like” your photo and the photo with the most likes at the end of the day (midnight, EST) will win a free night at choice of any of the four Costa Rica Resorts.

5) St. Kitts Marriott Resort / www.facebook.com/stkittsmarriott
On June 30, visit St. Kitts Marriott’s Facebook page where you can answer the question posted in their status: “Which one of your friends is the most glued to his/her social networks?” Submit your answer on the resort’s Facebook wall and tag your socially addicted friend to receive a voucher for a 40% discount off a spa treatment at the Emerald Mist Spa.

6) JW Marriott Cancun Resort and Spa
/ www.facebook.com/JWMarriottCancun
CasaMagna Marriott Cancun Resort / www.facebook.com/casamagnacancun
Facebook users who tag themselves in a specified property photo (which will be announced on the resorts’ Facebook pages) on Social Media Day, will be entered to win a three night stay at the resort. Winners will be drawn at random.

Flickr photo by jmenard48