Amusement Rides & Devices Consultation Summary Report

 

Consultation Summary

Industry and public consultation on proposed changes to amusement ride regulations was carried out from July 17 – September 30, 2019. During this time Technical Safety BC engaged with over 800 stakeholders including facility owners and operators, industry associations, interest groups, municipalities and members of the public. This summary outlines the consultation activities that took place, as well as a summary of the input and feedback received through the various engagement channels.

Currently, amusement devices that fall under Technical Safety BC’s jurisdiction of installation and operation include a range of rides and equipment, such as roller coasters, waterslides, zip-lines, some inflatable play equipment, and train rides. However, a range of amusement devices are not currently subject to regulation including bungee devices, go-karts, ropes challenge courses, and indoor sky diving. As technologies change and new devices come onto the market, safety regulation needs to thoughtfully adapt to address risk and ensure public safety. With this in mind, Technical Safety BC is proposing changes to the current regulations around existing devices, as well as reviewing new, emerging and currently unregulated amusement devices.

 

Participation & Engagement Activities

Industry Engagement Activities
 

Method Intended audience Participants/Sites
Site visits Facility owners/operators in the Lower Mainland, Northern, Island and Interior regions 18
Webinars Facility owners/operators from across the province 41
Meetings (in-person and by phone) Industry associations, municipalities and interest groups 7
Focus Group Owners and operators of major rides (fair rides), inflatables, waterslides, ropes challenge and zipline courses, ninja gym 19
Online survey Facility owners/operators 72

Public Engagement Activities
 

Method Intended audience Participants
Online survey Members of the public, parents and patrons 570
Alberni District Fall Fair Members of the public, parents and patrons 300
Hastings Community Center Open House Members of the public, parents and patrons 12
Point Grey Fall Festival Members of the public, parents and patrons 60

Industry Participant Demographics

Over 50% of survey respondents self-identified as owning/operating challenge courses.

 

Industry Participant Demographics

Click to enlarge

 

Industry Feedback Received

How supportive are you of the proposed amusement rides and devices regulatory changes? Please rate your level of support.

 

 

Value Percent Count
Very unsupportive 36.6% 26
Unsupportive 14.1% 10
Neutral 18.3% 13
Supportive 22.5% 16
Very supportive 8.5% 6
  Totals 71

How long would it take for your business to be able to meet the requirements of these changes?

 

 

Value

Percent

Count

Less than 1 year

30.6%

19

1 year

32.3%

20

2 years

16.1%

10

3+ years

21.0%

13

 

Totals

62

Public Feedback Received

 

Based on your knowledge, do you agree that further regulations are needed around the amusement ride industry in BC?

 

 

Value

Percent

Count

Strongly agree

47.4%

269

Agree

34.0%

193

Neutral

10.6%

60

Disagree

4.1%

23

Strongly disagree

3.9%

22

 

Totals

567

If regulatory changes result in higher operational costs, what percentage increase would you be willing to pay for your entrance fee?

 

 

Value

Percent

Count

I would not be willing to pay more for this increased measure of safety

20.2%

114

I would be willing to pay a 5% increase

19.4%

109

I would be willing to pay a 10% increase

31.4%

177

I would be willing to pay a 50% increase

6.4%

36

Any price to ensure all aspects of rides are regulated

22.6%

127

 

Totals

563

Key Themes – Industry Engagement

  • Some stakeholders expressed support for the concept of a “level playing field” which they believe would result from the proposed changes. Currently, those facilities which operate under regulation may be at a competitive disadvantage compared with facilities who are not required to follow the same rules and regulations.

  • Some stakeholders noted that voluntary industry standards currently exist which they feel provide sufficient safety oversight and guidance. These stakeholders see the proposed changes as redundant.

  • Concerns around the potential costs of the proposed regulation were raised 30 times in the industry survey (out of 72 total responses). This was also a central theme across all the feedback received through meetings, site visits and phone conversations with stakeholders. “Not-for-profit camps operate with very small margins and changing the regulatory and standards environment may be a more significant financial challenge then they can accept.”


Key Themes – Public Engagement

  • Members of the public were generally surprised to learn that rides and devices including go-karts and bungee devices were not currently regulated in BC.

  • Technical Safety BC heard strong support from the public for the proposed changes.

  • Members of the public who expressed disagreement with the proposed regulatory changes noted a general aversion to “government oversight” and associated costs.


Next Steps

Technical Safety BC will submit a Request for Amendment to the provincial government by December 31, 2019 which will include a summary of the input received through consultation. While Technical Safety BC will recommend potential regulation changes around amusement rides, the provincial government will ultimately decide whether regulatory changes will be introduced, and if so, how the industry would be regulated.

Attachments
Verbatim feedback – industry
Verbatim feedback – public