Six Flags Amusement Park Hires Robot Security Guard
By Brady MacDonald
The Orange County Register
VALENCIA, Calif. — An artificial intelligence-based security guard robot with a Shakespearean name will soon be patrolling Six Flags Magic Mountain and surrounding parking lots looking for fraudsters and rule breakers — but no one will confuse Roameo with RoboCop.
The new Roameo security robot will begin patrolling Magic Mountain next week, Six Flags officials say.
Roameo will operate in the Magic Mountain parking lot during park operations and in the amusement park after hours, Six Flags officials said.
The 12 mph autonomous robot will serve as a mobile version of Magic Mountain’s current fixed CCTV security cameras. Much like pole and building mounted security cameras, Roameo will be able to identify intruders in restricted areas of the Valencia amusement park.
Roameo will not respond directly to violations, but the bot can notify its human counterparts of intruders in secure areas.
Among Roameo’s capabilities: Recognize amusement park visitors who are not wearing face masks. Roameo will not be used for COVID-19 health and safety mask compliance at Magic Mountain, Six Flags officials say.
The bot’s 21-inch touchscreen can provide maps, wait times, and other information. Magic Mountain cannot confirm whether Roameo will offer wait times and amusement park passes as the new robot is still in the testing phase.
The AI robot can jump curbs, climb hills in the rain, and identify vehicles, license plate numbers, and people. With additional software, it can check photo IDs, check body temperature, and even unlock doors.
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The new Six Flags robotic security guards will be provided by Michigan-based Robotic Assistance Devices (RAD). Another Roameo will start working at Six Flags Over Texas about a week after the first bot rolls out at Magic Mountain, according to RAD officials.
RAD is in talks with Florida theme park companies about adding the Roameo robots, according to the Orlando Sentinel. Walt Disney World was not among the potential buyers, the Sentinel reported.
A Roameo robot security guard patrolled the World Series in Atlanta in October. RAD has confirmed the sale of the Roameo robots to an unnamed California casino and a major Hollywood movie studio.
The hulking robot cop – which stands 6ft 6in and weighs 750lbs – is equipped with cameras, speakers, microphones and a touchscreen.
Roameo doesn’t look much like the half-man half-man robot that patrolled the crime-ridden streets of Detroit in the 1987 movie “RoboCop” and later sequels.
Fortune describes Roameo as the “illegitimate offspring of Wall-E and Baymax” while Screamscape calls the Autonomous Officer a “cross between a popcorn cart and a Google Maps camera car”.
Robotic Assistance Devices showcased a Six Flags version of Roameo at the International Association of Amusement Parks and Attractions Expo in November. The Roameo at the 2021 IAAPA Expo in Orlando, Florida sported a baby blue finish, coiled roller coaster track accents, neon blue trim and a Six Flags Department of Public Safety shield.
Six Flags parks will not call the Roameo robot. At the IAAPA Expo, the bot’s oversized Six Flags name tag read “Parker.” The two Six Flags robots at Magic Mountain and Over Texas will use the Parker name, according to RAD officials.
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