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The world's most dangerous theme park reopens


For the thrill seeker, Alton Towers has nothing on this amusement park.

The infamous 'Action Park' in New Jersey, which has been closed for almost 20 years having been dubbed ‘the world’s most dangerous amusement park’ has reopened with the promise of terrifying rides alongside some much-required safety.

During the period from 1978 to 1996, six people died and hundreds more were injured - sometimes averaging five to 10 injuries each day – as they embarked on petrifying rides such as the Alpine Slide, where riders would fly down a concrete track in a car with just a handbrake.

The Canyon Cliff drops visitors 23 feet into crystal clear mountain spring. It's one of Action Park’s most popular attractions

But now the 35-acre theme park, which was loved by visitors despite the dangers, has reopened with many of its original hair-raising outdoor rides still in place alongside the necessary safety measures.

The body slide sends riders into a steep descent before they plunge 18 feet into a fresh water spring

Riders on the Colorado River Ride must now wear face masks to protect themselves from collisions.

In place of an infamous upside-down water slide, is a 100 foot drop water-slide that the park calls “the world’s tallest double-looping waterside”. It reportedly cost $1 million to build.

As one park executive said it's "all of the thrills and none of the spills".

The new manager Andy Mulvihill, son of the park’s founder Gene Mulvihill, was keen to refute any worries about dangers of the attraction. "The world’s changed," said Mulvihill. "I refuse to be involved in any rides where anybody can get hurt."

This ride starts with a dark tunnel and a 45˚ drop before accelerating riders into a giant funnel

Mulvihill added, "The overall conclusion that the people who went to Action Park have is that it was a phenomenal place. I don’t get approached by people telling me what a terrible place it was. The strength of that passion far outweighed the negative things."

A 2013 documentary captured the nostalgia New Jersey locals felt for the park, with one commentator saying, "The rides at Action park were lawless. You could see that, you could tell no one particularly cared what you did".

Other attractions include tunnels with 360° bends and a head first racing slide that is built into the natural contours of the mountain

(Words: Sejal Kapadia, images: Action Park)



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