It’s a perennial rumor each time Splash Mountain goes down for refurbishment, be it at the Walt Disney World or Disneyland Resort, but this time it’s confirmed: lap bar restraints have been added to Magic Kingdom’s Splash Mountain.
Screamscape confirms the report with a photo of the vehicles with the restraints in place as they have just begun been cycling through the attraction for testing purposes. The white boxes you see sitting in the logs are simply dummy weights designed to simulate the weight of guests to ensure the logs travel through the attraction properly.
According to Screamscape, the new vehicles will restrict each row to a maximum of two guests regardless of size and increase launch times between vehicles by up to 8 seconds each (for a total of 20 seconds) which ensures a slower loading process and a lower theoretical hourly ride capacity (THRC) which will likely also reduce the number of FASTPASSes issued per return window.
Splash Mountain is currently scheduled to re-open on February 1.