Alabama should have licensed

Published 12:00 am Tuesday, September 14, 1999

inspector for fairs rides

Published Sept. 14, 1999

Many people, young and old alike, look forward to fall for football season and state and county fairs. Football season is already upon us and the exciting state and county fairs are already being advertised.

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Even with the excitement of fairs, there is also a few dangers that could lurk among the midway rides that may not be properly constructed and then properly inspected.

Alabama is one of eight states where fair rides do not have to be inspected by state inspectors. The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission released information about an unusual amount of ride-related accidents during the summer and are encouraging the state officials to implement the use of licensed inspectors.

We are not advocating rides along the midway at the Pike County Fair or at the State Fair in Montgomery or any other fair or amusement park are unsafe, but when it comes to the health or the lives of children and adults we must realize the need for inspectors qualified by the state.

In some ways rides will always present a potential risk, but if we have the opportunity to keep the rides safe everything that can be done should be done to prevent injuries.

Last year more than 9,000 people nationwide were treated from accidents involving fair or carnival rides. Although no accident related deaths have occurred in Alabama since 1977, doesn’t mean that a fatal accident will not occur again.

Everyone from the fair riders to the fair crew to a licensed inspector from the state should be willing to do everything possible to make all rides as safe as possible and to prevent all accidents.