Inspections mean no need to fear for your safety at haunted attractions

The Dayton Scream Park has seen a 10 percent increase in foot traffic this year. It also recently expanded to four attractions, while other haunts are struggling.

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The Dayton Scream Park has seen a 10 percent increase in foot traffic this year. It also recently expanded to four attractions, while other haunts are struggling.

They’re all over this time of year: haunted houses, mazes and trails.

At the maze in Dayton Scream Park, there are guides along the way so if someone gets too scared, or just has had enough, they can be escorted out.

But there’s even more that goes into making sure these seasonal attractions are safe.

Four months of setup go into Lance Compton’s haunted attraction, Dayton Scream Park. The attention to detail is obvious, but Compton said the most important element of the park is that it’s safe.

“We have crowd control, we have fire pits and fire barrels we have to keep under control,” he said.

Each year before the explosions and other scares can go off, Compton said inspectors have to come and check the whole park.

“They go through everything and check what materials we’re using, for testing certain types of plastics and woods and things like that, see if things are have emergency exits everywhere,” he said.

And that’s for an outdoor facility.

Indoor facilities have even more regulations.

Fairborn inspector Jeffrey Tyler said Ohio’s building code sets rules, and there’s a reason why.

“These facilities have low light, they don’t have the greatest of pathways through those locations, so if there's an emergency, what needs to happen is people need to get out of those spaces pretty quickly,” he said.

Tyler said there have to be lit exit signs, however dark it is inside. And the actors also must help people in the event of an emergency.

“They become part of the safety of the facility," Tyler said.

Jamie Magel of Beavercreek said he loves Halloween and haunted houses.

“That makes the rest of the world feel a little better that the code’s out there and they’re being enforced,” he said.

Back at Dayton Scream Park, News Center 7's Sean Cudahy asked Compton whether the actors who scare people along the trails are allowed to grab patrons.

“We are allowed but we don’t,” Compton said. “Other haunts do it, but we've been considering it. We’re going to talk to the insurance company and see about that for next year.”

Compton said visitors OK with being grabbed would have to wear glow sticks to signal they have given their consent, and he said he would only use his longest tenured, most trusted actors.

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