There is no such thing as an “off-season” in the theme park industry. The gates may be closed but our maintenance crew and ride technicians are working in-full-gear, as this is their busiest time of year. The process of getting ready for the 2020 season began as soon as the last train pulled back into the station at the end of our operating season.
If you’re curious about what goes on, here’s a snapshot. All of the rides get completely disassembled…down to the very last bolt. The process happens every year to help prolong the life of our attractions, assure normal operation and most importantly to ensure the safety of our rides!
The winter maintenance for our rides consists of:
Dragon Fire trains wheels have been removed and dismantled in order to inspect the bearings.
Cleaning: Parts are cleaned so that they can be properly examined.
Inspection / Nondestructive testing (NDT): Once the cars have been stripped down, the parts from each ride will undergo testing methods specified by its manufacturer, including: RE (Radiographic Examination), UE (Ultrasonic Examination), MPE (Magnetic Partial Examination), LPE (Liquid Penetrant Examination), VI (Visual Inspection) and TT (Torque Testing).
Backlot Stunt Coaster is being dismantled, cleaned and inspected.
Repair: If there are any minor defects, we will repair it. Otherwise, we will replace the part to meet the manufacturer’s standards.
Re-paint: Trains/Cars are sand-blasted and epoxy painted.
Glen carefully inspects each of the 24 stationary horses, 42 jumpers and two chariots from the Antique Carousel to determine which ones need to be refreshed for the upcoming season.
Reassembly: After the inspection and repairs have been completed. Everything gets placed back together.
Placing train back on the tracks / Testing: The cars and trains will remain in our maintenance shop and storage buildings throughout the offseason to safeguard them from the cold Canadian winter. Once spring gets closer, the trains and cars return to their attraction for testing for the new season. Part of the testing could also include accelerometer testing once the trains are running.
The park may be quiet, but there’s plenty going on! It’s a big job keeping our rides in top shape and our maintenance team deserves major kudos for all their hard work during the off-season.