Big Dipper is facing possible extended maintenance just shy of two weeks after opening.
Opening on Boxing Day 2021, Big Dipper 3.0 was a late Christmas present for historic Luna Park Sydney, but it appears that locals and tourists that haven't yet experienced this attraction are going to need to wait even longer as the ride is now down for maintenance just 14 days after it's debut.
When visiting their website you'd hardly believe that there is a problem. The first thing you're greeted to are large, bold letters exclaiming 'Big Dipper Has Launched!' but it's only once you visited the attraction list that you can see that Big Dipper is indeed closed for maintenance.
Luna Park Sydney has not yet released any further information regarding the problem at hand or any estimates as to when the attraction will be back up., but thankfully forum member 'Gumby' was at the park on Sunday where they provided an update.
'Small update. The ride officially opened on the 26-12-2021. However, it's been closed since possibly around the 5-1-2022 sighting technical difficulties. I'm led to believe after asking a team member at the park that they ars parting through “teething” issues that are mechanically based.
No official word on how long the ride will be down. However, it seems a short while (a few weeks at least).'
The rumour mill churns quickly in the theme park industry and silence is not golden. Whilst this is no new issue for theme parks considering that rides go down for maintenance frequently, the park needs to manage guests' expectations and provide an update into why their brand new attraction is already seeing extended downtime two weeks after launch.
Usually to try to circumvent these problems theme parks will perform a 'soft open' where they temporarily open an attraction to the public before its official opening to help iron out any kinks like what we saw with Steel Taipan at Dreamworld on the Gold Coast just over a month ago. Whilst we saw the Big Dipper go through a rigorous testing process, no such soft opening was performed to the public.
Luna Park Sydney on top of this is already experiencing issues with their brand new 'Sledgehammer' attraction which is running in a limited 'B mode'. The timing of these problems is extremely unfortunate considering that the school holidays are some of the lucrative times for theme parks in Australia.
Thankfully beyond the radio silence from the historic boardwalk theme park, you shouldn't expect this to be a long-term problem. 'Big Dipper' is the first activation of Intamin's brand new 'Hot Racer' launched single rail coaster system and they need to make a good impression for any future customers interested in this attraction type. They would be aware of the problem and will work closely with Luna Park Sydney to make sure that their product is up and running as soon as possible.
This highly anticipated roller coaster is the first to open in Sydney in over two decades with the last being the previous iteration of Big Dipper at Luna Park Sydney which opened in 1995 but now operates as The Gold Coaster at Dreamworld. It's no wonder that both tourists and locals are keen to launch through Sydney harbour on this new attraction.
Fingers crossed that we get some good news soon.