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The Big Swing, Graskop - is it safety conscious?

Highworth, United...
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The Big Swing, Graskop - is it safety conscious?

We're visiting SA in August with SA friends and are looking for a big-thrill challenge for our 15yr old (who doesn't like heights) to do as a challenge to raise money for the World Scout Jamboree in Japan next year. This is something that we'd flagged. But, the first thing I found when I googled was the fatality a few years back (yes, I know these things happen i.e. the Vic Falls bungee), then the first review worried me too. Have to say I'm surprised their aren't more than three though, so it's hard to get a good feel for what's going on.

Can anybody local give me the low down please. Obviously we don't want to set her up for something, get a load of sponsorship, then get there and not be happy with the set up (then again it might be great!)

Many thanks, Sarah

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San Jose, California
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1. Re: The Big Swing, Graskop - is it safety conscious?

We saw the Big Swing during our Panoramic route drive. It is kind of like bungee, but instead of going straight down, you will be doing a half circular dive down instead. It looked really scarey. The Swing goes down very deep into a canyon.

By the way, we were there in late July, and it looked closed. No one was there. (We just saw the set up of the swing.) So, you don't want to go there, and then couldn't find anyone to even do it for your fundraising.

We also also saw people doing the bungee jump at Vic Falls over the bridge that connects Zimbabwe and Zambia. There were a lot of bungee jumpers. I took some pictures of them. If you were going to Vic Falls, I would recommend the bungee jumping instead. My then 12-year-old wanted to try it. She wasn't sure about the Big Swing thing.

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The Big Swing
The Big Swing
84 Reviews
Graskop, South Africa
Zambia
Zambia
Africa
Highworth, United...
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2. Re: The Big Swing, Graskop - is it safety conscious?

Yeh I saw the bungee at Vic Falls on new years day 1995 when we were on our honeymoon - it was the biggest one in the world then - and tried to get a go but it was fully booked. I'd done Skippers Canyon in NZ in 91 (the previous biggest) and nearly had a heart attack! So we ended up doing the white water rafting and had a blast. In any case, we're not going to Zim this time and besides that my daughter probably wouldn't even want to walk over the bridge, she likes heights that much!

Glad you said about the possibility that the one at Graskop might not even be open - big worry. The size is probably more "annabel appropriate" though. Maybe I'll end up persuading her to do the bungee near joburg off the towers (trouble is she may bottle it though, so no sponsor money - hummm, time for a rethink)

San Jose, California
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3. Re: The Big Swing, Graskop - is it safety conscious?

Well, if your daughter won't walk over the bridge, then the Big Swing is not for her. We saw the set up. The Big Swing is BIG.

I am not afraid of heights, but I can never see myself doing the Bungee jump, scarey!

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The Big Swing
The Big Swing
84 Reviews
Graskop, South Africa
Johannesburg, South...
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4. Re: The Big Swing, Graskop - is it safety conscious?

everytime i went it is always quiet ,

If you going to be in SA and in Johannesburg , why dont yourl try this?

http://www.orlandotowers.co.za/

Highworth, United...
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5. Re: The Big Swing, Graskop - is it safety conscious?

Hi Atlantis, this looks a great idea. Saw this on An Idiot Abroad in the UK (the guy bottled it and got the camera man to take his place) so would be good for advertising her fundraiser too. I also thought was was just a bungee but to have the swing option is good - the challenge is going to be huge for her so some options will be essential to persuade her one is easier than the other. Tried to access the 'Lady Screamer" but can't see that as yet - got my imagination going though!

Have to say Graskop swing is worrying me and need to have something that isn't going to blow everything at the last minute.

Many thanks

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6. Re: The Big Swing, Graskop - is it safety conscious?

Also if you do the http://www.orlandotowers.co.za/

This is near Mandelas house in Soweto aroubd 5-10 min away , you can also pop around there for a quick tourist visit.

the big swing is also nice , its always nice to go where there is lots of activity so that you know that the equipment is safe , I have been to Graskop for the last 3 years on my way to Kruger and always stopped by this place to see someone do this thing , but everytime i went there was nobody jumping, so off i went to the bar for a coke drink , and in my car and towards the panorama route.

best bet is to go to the big swing and see for yourself on the day , i assume yourl will be touring that area aswell as there is also alot of good things to see in that area ( 3rd largest canyon in the world , waterfalls etc , google panorama route .)

you touring with your SA friends i assume they will know the area.

have fun.

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7. Re: The Big Swing, Graskop - is it safety conscious?

To the original poster: did you go to the Big Swing since you posted this in 2014. Any impressions of the outfitt? (They had a fatal accident in 2009! Google it!) Any impressions of the outfit if you visited them? I sent them an e-mail today and I'm hoping for a reply from them. Here's the email I wrote:

"Hi there,

I'm from Belgium. My family and I are making a self drive trip through South Africa next July. I found "The Big Swing' in Graskop on the internet (Tripadvisor) and was immediately sure that it was something great to do together with my 16 yr old son.

But then I found that there had been a fatal accident in 2009 and three people were convicted.

This made me hesitate!

What I would be interested in knowing is what the result was of the 2009 accident investigation? A) What caused the accident? and B) What has been done since then to avoid such an accident from reoccurring?

I would be particularly interested in knowing if the rupture of ONE single element (rope, chain, link...) can cause an accident? I would want to know that any single equipment failure can't cause an accident! (backups?)

Could you please tell me more about what safety measure are taken to guarantee the safety of your customers?

I would like an adrenaline rush but my intelligent mind needs to know that an accident through equipment failure is not possible!

Could you please give some more info? I think the info on your website about the safety aspect is not sufficient.

Best regards,

..."

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The Big Swing
The Big Swing
84 Reviews
Graskop, South Africa
Belgium
Belgium
Europe
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8. Re: The Big Swing, Graskop - is it safety conscious?

Here's the reply I got from them:

"Hi Peter,

I have been running the swing since the accident and have a 100% safety record

The accident was caused by human error and not equipment failure

It was a tragic freak accident

We look forward to seeing you guys for a jump and you will be very impressed by my well trained staff and safety standards

Your choice of course

Thanks so much

Laura"

Frankly I'd like to get more detailed information! I won't make a reservation before I get there.

Highworth, United...
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9. Re: The Big Swing, Graskop - is it safety conscious?

Hi Peter D

I'd forgotten all about this post! But we did go to South Africa and she did do her jump, just not this one (The Big Swing)

We decided to to the Bungee Jump at the Orlando Towers as the friends we were staying with knew about it (their daughter had jumped before) and it would definitely be open when we were there (not every day in July/Aug), so we could definitely do the charity jump. As it was, the most terrifying thing for her turned out to be the wire cage life that takes you up the outside of the towers - nightmare if you're scared of heights! As for the jump, she just went off the end as quickly as possible. (Great views of Soweto for spectators from the top by the way)

If you're looking for adventure, look out for Magoebaskloof Canopy Tours if you are near the area going too or from the Kruger - great fun for everyone and very safe (see my separate review)

Also looking forward to seeing The Big Swings reply to your enquiry - have a feeling I'll be in for a long wait.

Enjoy your trip whatever you end up doing!

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The Big Swing
The Big Swing
84 Reviews
Graskop, South Africa
Highworth, United...
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10. Re: The Big Swing, Graskop - is it safety conscious?

Wow, a reply before I finished typing - impressive! But I agree with you Peter, with anything like this you always need to see things yourself and get a feel for how everything is run before signing on the dotted line.

Fingers crossed and have a great trip.

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