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Bob Carroll
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Army Corps Banning Tube Flying

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Tube flying has received another negative review because it is basically an ultra-hazardous activity disguised as a new water sport.

According to the Washington Post the Army Corps of Engineers is banning tube flying (tube kiting) from facilities under its jurisdiction.

Army Corps Punctures Kite Tubes

U.S. Army Corps of Engineers’ districts are moving quickly to ban “tube kiting,” a relatively unknown water sport that has experienced an explosion in popularity this summer.

The Little Rock district has banned the sport, which is linked to two deaths and dozens of serious injuries, on the Corps’ lakes in Arkansas and Missouri, said Col. Wally Walters, the district engineer. Six other states have similar bans.

Kite tubes are inflatable devices that become airborne when pulled behind a boat at speeds above 25 mph. Riders stand on fabric flooring and hold grips on the tube. Walters said that once airborne the tubes often tip over, ejecting the rider. A National Park Service release warned that the tubes “may rise uncontrollably” up to 25 feet and then dive toward the water. Ejected riders can strike the water at speeds approaching 50 mph.

It may take a wave of lawsuits against the manufacturers of these unstable products to convince them that airborne tubes are not the next great idea.