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One splash leads to another

There aren't many people in the Netherlands who haven't experienced the thrill of whooshing full speed down a water slide. Watergames & More from Zoetermeer builds water slides for swimming pools, camp sites, and amusement parks. VIRO takes care of the anchoring calculations – and more.

‘Our partnership started at the beginning of 2017, having been brought together by a former VIRO team member who was working at Watergames & More. Back then, much of the engineering work – and production of the slides – was outsourced to Poland. However, in recent years, more and more of the engineering work has been reshored to the Netherlands. They have invested in their own engineering department and, at peak times, benefit from having a flexible team of employees. We’ve already carried out several projects, and we proactively look for solutions for customers’. Richard Karssen is an engineer at the Vlaardingen branch. He was visiting to see how one assignment led to another and how multiple VIRO disciplines are now working for Watergames & More at different locations.

Better safe than sorry

Anchoring the water slides was the first thing on the list: ‘We calculate the reaction forces in the soil. This information is essential if our foundations are going to be solid. Of course, having solid foundations is important for safety. It's about people, so we apply high safety factors. The calculations are based on the worst-case scenario, i.e. a water slide full of people, including people weighing 150 kilos. That's the kind of values we're talking about. Safety requirements for amusement rides are very high, and the Netherlands applies a specific standard to water slides.’

More VIRO disciplines

One thing led to another. The Construction and Architecture department at the Arnhem branch took over the design of a foundation. A team member from Mechanical Engineering took care of another project: ‘The water slides are produced in Poland on the basis of moulds that are used to make standard slide sections. The slide sections will be transported and assembled at the construction site. A team member digitised the fibreglass slide sections and drew them in 3D. We then made a library of the slide components, which is ideal for Watergames & More. From that moment on, they were able to make their own designs faster and easier, based on the customers’ wishes. It's very customer-oriented and efficient.’

Speed software

‘Since then, there have been a number of projects in which we have been able to provide a practical service to Watergames & More. We also developed a software tool that allows the company to independently and relatively easily determine the slide speed on the water slide. If you know how long the slide will be and the slope, you can predict the sliding speeds. Earlier in 2019, we carried out a major design assignment for a slide construction project, including decor. At the moment, we’re conducting material research into the fibreglass construction. This will enable us to determine the strength of a slide construction even better.’