Tragedy struck in Ohio on Wednesday when a fair ride critically malfunctioned, killing one and injuring seven.
According to the Columbus Dispatch, the incident happened on the opening night of the Ohio State Fair. A spokesman for the Columbus Fire District told the newspaper that an arm on the Fire Ball ride broke apart about 7:20 p.m., throwing victims into the air.
One victim landed about 50 feet from the ride, the newspaper reported. The 18-year-old young man was killed on impact.
Three of the other victims were in critical condition while four were listed in stable condition. The victims were taken to OhioHealth Grant Medical Center and the Ohio State University’s Wexner Medical Center. None of victims have been identified yet.
“The entire seat came off the ride and went flying,” one woman who witnessed the tragedy wrote on Facebook, according to the Australian Broadcasting Corporation.
“(I’ve) seen at least five people severely injured.”
Ohio Gov. John Kasich said that while the fair will be open on Thursday, all rides will be closed until they can be inspected again, according to WCMH-TV.
A 2012 video from WCMH-TV showed an inspection of the Fire Ball ride taking place at the same fairgrounds.
“I am terribly saddened by this accident, by the loss of life and that people were injured enjoying Ohio’s fair,” Kasich said in a statement.
“Our thoughts and prayers go out to those grieving and injured. I have ordered a full investigation into this incident and have ordered that all fair rides be shut down until additional safety inspections can be completed.”
Rides at the fair are apparently inspected in the week before the fair. They’re also subject to surprise inspections as the fair is ongoing.
Our thoughts and prayers are with the families affected by this tragedy.
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