Rides at the Fair: Local Parents Concerned for Kids’ Safety
It is tragic that a 10-year old elementary school girl was flung from a ride and died Saturday evening at a harvest festival in NJ. I heard from several moms who bring their kids to local events like the Fireman's Fair in Manasquan each year who are now having second thoughts.
Counselors are on hand and balloon memorials are popping up for the beloved little girl who was airlifted after being ejected from the Xtreme ride in Deerfield Township during the fair. Her siblings and so many other members of the community who saw what happened will be forever scarred by that nightmare. Precious Hailey McMullen lost her life and it is heart-wrenching.
Although the ride was shut down, the Department of Community Affairs told the ride operators they could re-open the next day...minus the ride that malfunctioned. Skelly's Amusement (wisely) realized that would NOT be a good idea.
One concerned Manasquan mom who contacted me said she is now having nightmares thinking about the rides she has let her elementary-school child go on at pop-up fairs like the Fireman's Fair in Manasquan because of the quick set-up and turn-around of the rides. She wonders if these rides could possibly be as safe as the ones that are stationary and not moved around from town to town every few days.
Of course officials say the rides are inspected and that there are even times when surprise inspections take place during events.
But nothing can prepare you for the one time that a ride could become a death trap.
Skelly's Amusements of Williamstown was the ride provider for this event, and some say that is, indeed, the same ride provider of the Fireman's Fair in Manasquan.
While so many parents look forward to the tradition of fairs and festivals coming to town and generations of family members going on similar rides year after year....do you think we are putting too much faith in the quality of these rides, the way they are set up, and the people who run them?
To read what Skelly's has to say (and, of course, they were so upset by the tragedy), CLICK HERE.