Six Flags America Becomes First Certified Autism Center Park in DMV

Six Flags America is the first theme park in the DMV to become a Certified Autism Center. This accreditation coincides with the introduction of a revolutionary and specialized restraint harness that allows guests with physical disabilities greater access to Six Flags’ thrill rides and dedicated days to welcome guests with sensory sensitivity.

The Certified Autism Center accreditation is in partnership with the International Board of Credentialing and Continuing Education Standards, the only credentialing organization providing this form of certification. As part of the program, guests now have access to trained park leadership and additional support elements. Specialty guides have been developed to highlight the various sensory impacts of each ride or attraction to help with planning a day at a Six Flags park.

“Six Flags America is proud to be a leader in offering more ways for families in the DMV to create memorable experiences,” said Rick Howarth, Park President at Six Flags America. “With enhanced training, our all-new ride safety harness system and new sensory sensitive operating days, more families will be able to enjoy the park in new, better ways than ever before.”

As an accredited Certified Autism Center, Six Flags America will provide:

  • Trained, helpful, front-line team members equipped to better assist autistic guests and those with other sensory sensitivities to help them enjoy their time at the park;
  • A sensory guide for every attraction that provides insight into how the attraction or ride may be affected by each of the five senses to make it easier for individuals and families to plan activities that align with their needs;
  • Low sensory areas to allow guests with sensory sensitivities to take a break and relax in a less stimulating environment;
  • An updated Accessibility Guide will be available online on the park’s accessibility page and Guest Services area; and
  • Park-wide implementation of the IBCCES Accessibility Card program. This is a free online program with mobile app option for guests to use when requesting assistance or accommodations at any of the Six Flags parks.

With the introduction of the Innovative Ride Safety Harness, Six Flags leads the industry as the first theme park company to manufacture and offer a custom restraint harness. The harness offers multiple sizes that are able to accommodate riders with physical disabilities such as a missing limb or appendages starting at 54” tall. Approximately 98 percent of all Six Flags theme park rides are equipped with an individually designed harness. Certain rider restrictions and qualifications will still apply.

Six Flags America’s upcoming Sensory Sensitive Days are Wednesday, July 24 and Wednesday, August 17. These days will be open to all guests with reduced environmental triggers throughout the park.

  • No park audio. sound and music where possible;
  • Signage highlighting surprise sounds and experiences;
  • Free noise canceling ear plugs upon request; and
  • Additional low sensory locations identified throughout the park.

In addition to enhancing accessibility, admission to the park is an even greater value with its Buy Two, Get One Free admission promotion available through July 31.

Troy Petenbrink

Troy, also known as The Gay Traveler, is a well known travel and food writer. His has been a regular contributor to a variety of outlets including National Geographic, Travel Channel, DCRefined, CBS Local, and Metro Weekly. He also appears on local Washington news outlets as a travel expert.

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