Rain, Safety Top of Mind at Hopkins Co. Fair

Following Wednesday’s tragedy at Ohio State Fair, several states are pulling the plug on similar rides across the country.

An 18-year-old man died and seven others were hurt after a ride called “Fire Ball” fell apart. It spins in the air while swinging back and forth.

An 18-year-old man died and seven others were hurt when a row of seats broke off.

The manufacturer, KMG, is a Dutch company. It has instructed amusement park operators to stop similar rides until further notice.  Indiana and Kentucky say this ride will not be at their state fairs this year.

The Hopkins County Fair isn’t taking chances, pulling a ride like “Fire Ball,” called “Cyclops,” following the accident. Workers took it down overnight and replaced it with another ride.

Mike Neighbors works for Drew Expositions and oversees the rides. “We have a daily inspection that’s maintained every day before operation,” he says. Checks by more than 40 people keep rides running smooth.

“Any time there’s an incident on a similar piece of equipment we have, until we find out exactly what it is, we won't operate it,” Neighbors adds.

The Hopkins County Fair is close to full swing heading into the weekend and there’s a lot on the minds of carnival crew, like the accident in Ohio.

“One reason it gets so much attention when something does happen is the rarity,” says James Graybeal, show manager for Drew. “We want everybody to be safe and have fun.”


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