The North Carolina State Fair will soon be investigated for the accident that occurred on the grounds last night leaving five people injured. On Thursday night, October 24th, one of the fair’s popular rides known as the Vortex unexpectedly restarted while riders were still exiting the attraction. Popular for its infamous flips and twirls, the ride has been shut down after last night’s mishap, which left three people suffering from minor injuries and two others hospitalized in critical condition.
Investigators have not yet determined the cause of the accident, but they are currently looking into the role that a safety switch of the ride might have played in the malfunction. According to T. Chambers, chief of the Ride Inspection unit of the North Carolina Labor Department, the safety switch malfunctioned once earlier in the week but was quickly replaced, allowing the Vortex to reopen that same night. The same cannot be said of last night’s incident.
The state agricultural commissioner of North Carolina has already come out strong in defense of the fair, saying that the ride’s malfunction was “an isolated incident.” However, given previous statements from the fair’s Ride Inspection Chief, the commissioner’s statement seems somewhat questionable. Not surprisingly, the ride will undergo inspection by both the sheriff’s office and the state Department of Labor. Witnesses will also be asked to recount their experience of what happened last night.
This is not the first incident of its kind in North Carolina. In 2002, a ride operator lost his life when he was struck by the ride he was operating. The same is true of state fairs across the country, where rides that can be taken down and set back up in different locations continue to cause serious injury and / or death to some of the riders. To learn more about filing a claim for an injury that was sustained at an amusement park, contact The Senators Firm at (949) 557-5800.