No federal laws or state regulations deal specifically with zip lines.
Amusement businesses, however, must follow industry inspection standards, such as those provided by the ACCT, which is the largest of two that specifically accredit zip line builders and inspectors. The other group is Professional Ropes Course Association.
The practice of zipping through and above nature on a line suspended in air and tied to surrounding trees or stands has become one of the most popular outdoor activities. The line that Copeland was riding over the Little Tallapoosa River on May 1 was attached to a low bluff, rising perhaps 6 feet above a rock bank. The line snapped on the 24-year-old woman’s second ride, sending the nature-loving Snellville native onto the rocks beneath and leaving her with an injury that has become life-threatening.
Conservatively, at least 18 million people ride commercially operated zip lines annually, according to the Association for Challenge Course Technology. In the absence of state regulations, the group sets standards for an estimated 250 commercially operated zip line businesses in the U.S. ACCT also accredits zip line builders and inspectors. Although zip lines have been a part of outdoor challenge courses for decades, commercially operated zip lines are a relatively new industry, with the first appearing around early 2000. We believe it is absolutely critical for any zip line to be installed by a qualified challenge course professional.