Children’s ride at Miami County Fair malfunctions; No injuries reported

Seven children on a ride at the Miami County Fair were unhurt Saturday evening when the ride malfunctioned, county officials said in a statement released tonight.

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Secondary safety devices worked in bringing the ride to a safe stop after what fair officials describe as a minor malfunction.

"Due to the success of this safety device no one was injured," according to the statement from the Miami County Agricultural Society. All seven riders were evacuated safely in accordance with the protocol in place, agriculture society officials said.

Fair board members, Midway amusement partners Burton Brothers Amusements and office staff were at the ride in minutes, according to the statement.

Missy McGovern-Prather, of Huber Heights, said her granddaughter and her best friend's granddaughter were in the front seat of the Dragon Wagon when it malfunctioned. Her friend's granddaughter was not injured.

McGovern-Prather said her granddaughter suffered a scratch on her leg that didn’t break the skin. The other child  was not injured. Both are 9 years old.

"It's going to leave a nice bruise. It shook me up, of course, and them," McGovern-Prather said.

McGovern-Prather, who sent photos of the ride to this newsroom, said she was told the front wheels separated from the carrier. She said she saw the front wheels come off as the ride rounded a curve and started up a short hill. The ride came to a dead stop. The wheels continued along the track.

"My heart just sank," McGovern-Prather said. "It didn't fall. Thank God!"

She and the girls stayed after the incident and enjoyed the other attractions at the fair.

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McGovern-Prather said she doesn't want to knock the Miami County Fair because they do a wonderful job, but she's not returning to the fair Sunday, she said.

The Ohio Department of Agriculture Division of Ride Inspections has been notified and direction is being taken from them for the repairs. The ride will be repaired and is expected to be approved for operation prior to the Midway opening Sunday.

The Miami County Fair continues through Aug. 15.

We will update this report as we learn more.

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