WILDWOOD, N.J. (CBS/AP) — A New Jersey amusement park ride reopened Friday and one remains under review after they were shut down following the deadly state fair accident in Ohio.
Morey’s Piers in Wildwood, New Jersey, says it has reopened one of its two similar rides, IT. Morey’s Piers said the “Malestrom” ride is “still under review by the manufacturer and the State and will remain closed until further notice.”
The full statement reads:
Following the tragedy that occurred on a ride at the Ohio State Fair on Wednesday, July 26th, Morey’s Piers chose to close two rides, “IT” and “Maelstrom”, due to the potential similarities between these rides. On Thursday, July 27th, the State of New Jersey required Morey’s Piers to keep these two rides closed until further notice. In the interim, Morey’s has been working closely with the State of New Jersey and KMG International, the ride designer/manufacturer, to determine the next steps. KMG International has determined the ride “IT” to be substantially different in the design and engineering than the ride involved in the incident at the Ohio State Fair and thus safe to operate. After additional testing, and an engineering review through the State of NJ, the NJ Department of Community Affairs has approved the operation of “IT” and it is scheduled to re-open later today, Friday, July 28, 2017. The “Maelstrom” is still under review by the manufacturer and the State and will remain closed until further notice.
Morey’s Piers and Hersheypark temporarily closed the rides after 18-year-old Tyler Jarell died after being thrown about 50 feet after a section of the Fire Ball ride came apart.
In Monmouth County, officials say the company that operates its fair shut down “The Claw” on Wednesday night after learning the Fire Ball ride had malfunctioned and sent riders flying into the air.
Hersheypark spokesman Garrett Gallia told Lancaster Online the Hershey, Pennsylvania, park has closed the “The Claw” “until more information is learned about the tragic accident in Ohio.”
“As safety is our top priority, we felt that it was very much the right thing to do,” Gallia told Lancaster Online.
Seven other people were injured in the Ohio accident on the Fire Ball, including four teenagers.
The ride’s Dutch manufacturer told operators of the same attraction at fairs and festivals around the world to stop using it until more is learned about what caused the malfunction.
Ohio Gov. John Kasich shut down all rides at the state fair and ordered them inspected again. He said it was too early to say whether inspectors missed something that led to the tragedy Wednesday night.
“It’s a nightmare. It’s a terrible situation,” the Republican governor said.
Video taken by a bystander of the swinging, spinning Fire Ball ride in action captured a crashing sound. A section holding four riders came apart, and screams could be heard as at least two people were ejected and plunged toward the ground. Other riders were still in their seats as they fell.
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