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International Task Force Will Develop G-Force Standards for Amusement Rides

On Feb. 3, the World Standards Task Group of ASTM Committee F24 on Amusement Rides and Devices met in Tampa to discuss unique design requirements for rides such as clearance envelopes, control and mechanical systems. The group of over 50 stakeholders from North and South America, Asia, Europe, and Russia focused on standards for G-force levels on rides.

“This was the first opportunity to discuss G-forces on a common level thanks to the recent passage of ASTM F 2137-01, Standard Practice for Measuring the Dynamic Characteristic of Amusement Rides and Devices,” says task group chairman Jim Seay, the president of Premier Rides, Millersville, Md. “Up until now it has been somewhat irresponsible to discuss a standard for G-force levels because there was no accepted consistent method for testing G-forces. Even the presenters at the task-group meeting cautioned against comparing their results as their testing procedures varied greatly. All agreed that the ability to collect future G-force information using a common test procedure will be valuable.”

The task group will evaluate available G-force information based on the new testing standard. They will present standard G-force levels for ballot among ASTM International members in July, according to Seay.
Meeting attendees included manufacturers, consumer groups, regulatory officials, park operators, and safety consultants. “I was especially pleased that we could have so many experts on G-forces come together and openly discuss and present their research and findings,” adds Seay, who is vice chairman of Committee F24. “Only in a forum like the task group can one assemble the necessary experience to develop a meaningful standard.”

The World Standards Task Group was established four years ago to adapt the existing standards of Committee F24 to an international environment. It operates under ASTM Subcommittee F24.24 on Design and Manufacture, chaired by Patty Sullivan, president and CEO, Eli Bridge Co., Inc., Jacksonville, Ill. The subcommittee creates international guidelines for the design and manufacture of theme-park equipment.

Task group meetings are open to all individuals regardless of ASTM membership. They meet twice yearly during main Committee F24 meetings and additionally as necessary. Direct technical questions to Jim Seay at Premier Rides, Millersville, Md. (phone: 410/923-0414). Committee F24 meets Oct. 4-6 in Phoenix, Ariz. For meeting or membership details, contact Bruce Noe, manager, ASTM Technical Committee Operations (phone: 610/ 832-9719). //

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