Has anyone else every grayed/blacked out on a coaster?

Edited: June 17, 2016, 2:39 PM

Have you ever blacked out on a coaster before?

Yesterday this was me on Nitro's first drop. I also grayed out in the helix.
EDIT: This is just me pretending to grey out. I did actually grey out on Nitro in the helix but not at the bottom of the drop.

Replies (14)

Edited: June 16, 2016, 11:03 AM

It is due to when, normally on a bottom of a hill as the g force is very high, the blood that should be in the brain gets pulled down to your feet very quickly, this results in your brain not getting enough blood, hence not getting enough oxygen so you temporarily black out for a couple of seconds.
This can also have an opposite effect when on a loop as when you are upside down or when you experience negative g's, the blood rushes to your head and you have a red out.

June 16, 2016, 10:33 AM

You can grey out on the first hill after the loop on Flight Deck at California's Great America. Tatsu at Magic Mountain is another one that grey outs happen often, usually on the pretzel loop.

June 16, 2016, 11:29 AM

I do all the time on Rip Ride Rockit at USO. The same can be said on Superman: El Último Escape in Six Flags México.

June 17, 2016, 9:33 AM

Hulk is the only coaster I've consistently greyed-out on, during the cobra roll in daytime.

June 17, 2016, 11:21 AM

I greyed out pretty consistently on Intimidator 305 at Kings Dominion on the first turn before it was re-profiled. Some people were blacking out (total loss of consciousness) on that turn, which precipitated the change. Now, I just get a bit of tunnel vision coming out of that first turn.

@Jaiden - I don't think you technically "greyed-out" on Nitro, particularly not at that photo location which is near the bottom of the first drop, before you experience any positive g's on the upward arc (looks like you put on your "nap pose" for the camera). The max g's on that coaster are just before the hammerhead and the upward helix before the MCBR.

Greying out is a term to describe the lack of blood flow to the brain caused by intense g-forces. That's why fighter pilots wear "g-suits", which inflate the arms and legs during intense maneuvers to force blood from the extremities back up to the brain. Your pose would indicate a "black out" anyway, not a "grey out" where you're still alert, but on the fringe of consciousness.

June 17, 2016, 11:27 AM

Russel, I did grey out on the Helix, I was just poising for the camera.

June 17, 2016, 11:30 AM

They should actually put the camera on the helix. I would buy my picture every time.

June 17, 2016, 11:39 AM

I almost black out on Goliath at SFMM every time I ride it but I've never actually grayed out or blacked out.

June 17, 2016, 10:56 PM

I've never completely greyed out on a roller coaster, but I've gotten very close on some occasions (Intimidator 305 was probably the closest). Coasters with sustained positive g-force can do this, especially those that feature high speed helixes or long curves. Your physical state also has a lot to do with it. For example, sometimes I start to get tunnel vision on Goliath at SFMM, and other times I have no effects, with the main factors usually being how hydrated I am and how many other rides I've ridden already in the day (a night ride at the end of a hot day is the worst).

Greyouts can happen on more extreme theme park rides under certain conditions and are meant to be a warning that you are pushing yourself too far. However, afterward it is usually fine to continue provided you are still in safe shape to do so. If you ever experience a full blackout (where all vision disappears and you are struggling to remain conscious), it is time to stop riding and head home. G-LOC, where you do actually lose consciousness, is the next step and can be very dangerous if it occurs on a ride.

June 18, 2016, 5:23 AM

Firehawk at Kings Island. Face down, at the bottom of a loop, I saw this little black dot appear in the middle of my vision surrounded by a fuzzy gray area and thought to myself, "Great. I'm going to be the one responsible for the ride being closed for an hour while they untangle my unconscious body from the ride and haul my aging butt to the hospital, probably mentioning my name on the nightly news." It's amazing what goes through your head in a brief moment, and I determined not to pass out. I didn't, but never rode it again. I'd rather be a wuss than be the lead story on the Cincinnati nightly news.

Edited: June 18, 2016, 9:15 PM

Every time I ride the Hulk, I grey out on the first loop. Basically any loop (not barrel rolls though) will do it to me, but I've never blacked out. I'm always hoping to, because I've never had that experience, but I'm sure that would mean something bad. Lol.

June 18, 2016, 8:01 PM

I've also felt like I was going to grey out on El Toro (back row, hot day) Kingda Ka (hot day) Superman Ultimate Flight (in the pretzel loop) and Batman the Ride on a really really hot day.

June 18, 2016, 8:45 PM

I also almost greyed out on El Toro. It usually gets to me after the drop and the whiplash begins

June 19, 2016, 4:06 AM

I don't get whiplash on El Toro. It's as smooth as glass in the back seat.

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