Witnesses react to carnival ride accident

Witnesses react to carnival ride accident

MT. CARMEL, IL (WFIE) - State inspectors were called in to investigate after an incident on a carnival ride.

It happened at the Ag Days Festival in Mount Carmel Thursday night.

Two children got hurt after officials tell us the Ferris Wheel ride malfunctioned.  That ride is now permanently shut down.

We're told the electronic loading ramp malfunctioned and rose up during the ride.

The ramp rose high enough to clip the foot rests from the carts, causing leg and foot injuries to several.

Witnesses tell us people riding had to scramble to keep their feet up--with the wheel still going.

Two kids walked away with minor bruises and cuts on their legs.

"I'm just surprised. I'm wondering what is going on," said Gina Goldman, a Mt. Carmel resident. "It is the company? Is it the people that run these rides that's letting people run them, that maybe have drugs or alcohol in their system? You don't know!"

The Wabash County Sheriff told us on Friday the operator of the Ferris wheel was sent to the hospital for drug and alcohol screening.

His results came back clean.

Mt. Carmel's city clerk told 14 News the company that provides the rides require criminal background checks for its employees and safety training on a regular basis.

"There appeared to be a lot of chaos, screaming, and a lot of scared people," said a witness. "Luckily nobody was hurt seriously.  There was some bruising and that kind of thing.  They eventually got the ride shut down and got people down safely."

Mount Carmel's Sheriff told us this case is not being treated as a criminal investigation.

The Ferris wheel will remain closed but all other rides at AG Days will stay open through Saturday.

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