California State Fair Shuts Down Fire Ball After Deadly Ohio Fair Accident

SACRAMENTO (CBS13) — A deadly accident at the Ohio State Fair has repercussions across the country as the California State Fair has shut down a similar ride, likely for the duration of the fair.

California State Fair goers are now being kept off the Fire Ball.

“It was inspected by the state of California prior to opening here, and it was inspected by us and its inspected daily by Butler Amusements,” California State Fair safety inspector Barry Schaible said.

Schaible says crews closed the ride as soon as they received word about the deadly Ohio State Fair accident. A part of the ride dislodged, sending riders reportedly flying 50 feet in the air.

“We were alerted just about 10 minutes afterwards, we all got our phones ringing at the same time, and we went down and shut the ride down immediately,” Schaible said.

Fairgoer Kevin Nguyen says he rode the Fire Ball ride at Cal Expo on Tuesday night.

“They strap you in, you go all the way up, all the way down — and yeah it’s just scary,” Nguyen said.

“That ride’s going to stay closed until the manufacturer tells us what happened to their other one and gives us either a repair or tells us it’s okay to reopen it,” Schaible said

Video from past years at the state shows the Fire Ball in action.

Schaible says the ride has been part of the California State Fair off and on, for the past 15 years.

The manufacturer is Lawson International.

With four days left of the fair, Schaible says the Fireball will likely stay closed here for good.

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