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New Great America Coaster Reopens After Fixing Noise Issues

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Gold Striker roller coaster at Great America theme park. (CBS)

Gold Striker roller coaster at Great America theme park. (CBS)

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SANTA CLARA (KPIX 5) — California’s Great America theme park reopened its newest roller coaster in time for the 4th of July holiday weekend, after noise complaints from a nearby building forced the park to make modifications.

Workers installed a 70 foot enclosure at the Gold Striker roller coaster, covering a dip near the beginning of the ride. Park engineers said screams from the section traveled about 500 feet to a nearby office building on Great America Parkway, causing noise levels to slightly exceed limits.

On Monday, Great America took the unusual step of shutting down the coaster. The tunnel took two and a half days to build and work was completed Wednesday afternoon.

KPIX 5 tested the sound level of the roller coaster using a decibel meter app on an iPhone. Standing underneath the ride, the app showed a reading of 88 decibels. At the nearby office building, we received a reading of 65 decibels.

Raul Rehnborg, a park spokesperson, said the tunnel is working out great after riding the Gold Striker. The park official told KPIX 5 that too much screaming was a good problem to have.

“Every time I hear screams, it makes me smile. We don’t want to discourage any type of screaming. In fact, we encourage it. We just needed to make sure that we were compliant,” Rehnborg said.

Gold Striker opened to the public in June.

(Copyright 2013 by CBS San Francisco. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.)

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