the importance of care and maintenance of attractions
By Jeremy Railton
At Entertainment Design Corporation, while delivering shows, attractions and rides to the rapidly growing Asian tourist entertainment market, we have come across a consistent issue: we find that, as foreign vendors and consultants, we can easily fall into a false sense of security regarding the necessary care and maintenance of our attractions, once they have been handed over.
In China, the government funds entrepreneurs who are often not aware of the maintenance issue and therefore do not factor the ongoing cost and responsibility of maintenance into their attraction budget, whether they are simple iron rides or more complex attractions.
We find it helpful to bring up the maintenance issue very early, explaining the need for an experienced attraction maintenance team. It is sometimes a shock to clients that maintenance is an ongoing expense and they often rely on the original manufacturers to repair their attraction once it has broken down.
To emphasize the importance of ‘preventative maintenance’, we use the analogy of buying a car: the owner has to wash it, check the tires and keep all of the vitals topped up, but periodically the car needs to go in for a look under the hood by an expert—to evaluate wear and tear that is not obvious to the owner but can become a major problem if not detected in a timely way.
As attractions get more and more tech-driven, the need for highly qualified service engineers becomes even more pressing. That is why we now explain to clients that because a potential maintenance employee has engineering experience in car manufacturing, for example, it does not mean he is able to operate and maintain a sophisticated attraction that involves the integration of sound, lighting, water, effects and display systems.
The fact that it is dangerous and expensive for owners to operate attractions till they fail and only then call for help has to be explained to clients that are entering the market for the first time.
As all foreign companies do, EDC provides detailed operations manuals, videos and on-site training to our clients’ operations and maintenance teams. However, a few weeks of on-site training is not always sufficient. One solution is to make an agreement to leave a technical director that the operations team can ‘shadow’ for several months or until they gain sufficient confidence in operating cutting-edge technology that requires complicated technical operations manuals and hours of training.
We need to emphasize this point to Asian attraction owners, encouraging them to make service agreements with service companies that have a qualified technical staff.
Until an experienced maintenance cadre emerges in Asia, there is an opportunity for American companies to enter the attraction service market. It would be welcomed by Asian clients as that region currently has a lack of experienced attraction personnel, but this situation will change as the Asian themed attraction industry matures and we share our experience. • • •
된돕“뿟”棘駱돨郭괏‘”のП９퓔”橋瞳饑碌近냥빈，쳄벌무鱇쏵흙隊있륩蛟懇끝돨珂샙꼽삔돕윱。커품’綬痴刃塵굣┹“된‘굘켁쪽둑蘚턺핫乍敲“’綬淄零易㉪蕭燃턺핫思攄塾湧擄猪영컵齎し’뭔斛湘祉異布凋Ⅸ캣滂친“쳬‘“蒐ゾ駱谿儉쳬롸權。 • • •
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