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NYS Department of Labor announces ride inspections underway at Great New York State Fair

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Tue, Aug 20th 2019 01:20 pm

State Labor Department verifies inspections of all amusement rides

The New York State Department of Labor announced inspections of all rides at the Great New York State Fair are underway in advance of the fair’s opening later this week. The agencies also reminded fairgoers to follow all safety guidelines to enjoy the fair’s numerous rides.

“The Department of Labor is responsible for the safety of each and every ride, and we take that responsibility very seriously,” Department of Labor Commissioner Roberta Reardon said. “I thank the hardworking inspectors who do all they can to protect fairgoers each and every year.”

The New York State Department of Labor inspects all rides at stationary parks outside of New York City at least once a year, and inspects rides at traveling carnivals or fairs every time the ride is set up in a new location. A ride cannot legally operate without a permit from the Department of Labor. In 2018, the DOL performed 1,734 inspections on 9,170 amusement devices and issued 2,954 orders to correct violations.

The DOL inspections are a three-step process:

•As rides are brought into a fair or festival location, each individual part and component of each individual ride is inspected for defects.

•The ride is assembled and inspected again to ensure that all components have been assembled and secured properly.

•The operator of the ride is required to run the ride and it is inspected once more while operating. The person operating the ride is also observed to ensure they are operating the ride correctly.

The DOL places inspection tags on each ride after it has passed inspection. No ride that fails an inspection is permitted to operate, but these tags allow families to see plainly that the ride has been inspected and deemed safe. Information on the tag includes the name of the ride, the signature of the inspector, the date it was inspected, and whether it passed or failed.

Ride safety experts also issued a number of recommendations to make a day enjoying amusement rides as fun and safe as possible:

  • Read and follow all warnings and instructions.
  • Keep hands and feet inside the ride while it is moving.
  • Don't reach toward fences or barriers.
  • Secure loose clothing and long hair.
  • Don't drink and ride; you put yourself and others at risk.
  • Don't stand or attempt to leave a ride until it comes to a complete stop.
  • Check restraining devices to make sure they are properly latched. If the equipment does not work, exit the ride and immediately report the issue on the DOL’s safety inspections of amusement rides web page.
  • Avoid horseplay; it's dangerous.
  • Never attempt to unlock or loosen a restraining device until instructed by the operator. 

More safety tips for parents and children are available on the Ride Safe NY website.

For a list of rides that have been inspected and the businesses that own them, broken down by region, see the DOL’s amusement parks and event inspection & violations web page. Rides are inspected in the days leading up to each event, and the database is updated within two weeks of every event. If a ride is operating, it has passed inspection.

Anyone who wishes to report an unsafe ride is encouraged to contact the DOL at 1-888-4-NYSDOL.

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