Slide the City
Those living in and around Vancouver, BC may remember a popular public event called Slide the City, which drew crowds of all ages to take part in the attractions. What many may not have realized was the safety checks that occurred behind the scenes. This event was an opportunity where BC Safety Authority (BCSA) was able to work hand in hand with the host city and the Regional Health Authority to promote public safety on this unique amusement device.
Working on Slide the City, a giant inflatable slide over 1000 ft. long, gave safety officers and those at BCSA a chance to utilize their creativity to ensure public safety, as this attraction was not a device clearly defined by code or the Safety Standards Act. The uniqueness and novelty of devices such as this one called for interaction with multiple regulatory bodies. Additionally, BCSA had to consider that operators for such devices are often not from BC and have little knowledge of regulations surrounding these devices.
For the Slide the City event, BCSA decided to regulate the unit as an inflatable as it used blowers to feed a constant air supply and included a fixed course, both of which were definitions for an amusement device. Using a combination of code CSA Z267 (in reference to inflatable devices) and the manufacturer’s requirements, BCSA recommended these approaches along with general safety requirements. The Regional Health Authority also reviewed the water quality plan as large volumes of treated water was required for the device.
Operators interested in bringing unique amusement devices such as this one to town are encouraged to contact Technical Safety BC early on and learn about what type of documentation is needed to obtain permits or licences. Operators should also gain working knowledge of the code requirements as well as manufacturer’s requirements for safe operation. Along with common sense, these two documents will likely dictate how the device will be inspected by BCSA.