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Over-the-shoulder harness

Riders held in by over-the-shoulder restraints

Over-the-shoulder restraints (often abbreviated to OTSRs) are "U"-shaped restraints which swing down from behind the rider's head to secure the torso. Some also have a belt, which secures the bottom of the restraint to the seat, passing between the rider's legs.

Most roller coasters with inversions have over-the-shoulder restraints. Over-the-shoulder restraints keep riders seated upright and secure, however they can cause discomfort if the ears and head hits restraint. This problem is aggravated by a rough ride.

History[edit | edit source]

They are thought to have been introduced by Arrow Dynamics in 1975 on Corkscrew at Knott's Berry Farm, which is the first modern roller coaster with inversions.

From 2011, Bolliger & Mabillard have used vest harnesses instead of over-the-shoulder restraints on some of their roller coasters. Vest harnesses are thinner and more flexible than over-the-shoulder restraints, reducing headbanging.

Mechanism[edit | edit source]

Over-the-shoulder restraints on Arrow roller coasters used a hydraulic cylinder and various valves to secure riders. They were controlled by a foot pedal at the side of each car which is operated by the ride attendant. When the pedal is in the lock position, a one-way valve allows the restraint to be tightened but not opened, while the restraint can move freely when unlocked.[1]

References[edit | edit source]