Fair Ride Safety: What you need to know. - WNCN: News, Weather

Fair Ride Safety: What you need to know.

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GREENVILLE, N.C. - With October comes leaves changing colors, Halloween, and fairs.
     
This year's theme of the Pitt County Fair is "It's A Magical Fair."

While magic may be the theme this year, it takes a lot of planning and preparation to make sure the fair is safe for everyone to enjoy. 9 On Your Side looked into how amusement rides in our state are monitored.

On Monday, North Carolina Department of Labor Ride and Elevator Inspectors spent the day checking every bolt, light bulb, locks, and the structure of each and every ride. Inspector, Carey Creech, says our state has some of the toughest standards when it comes to amusement fire safety.

" There is no exception to being safe. The harder we are on you [ride operators] means the safe the rides are going to be. And at the end fo the day that's all that matters," said Creech.

Creech says once a ride is deemed safe it is given a certification sticker which has to be displayed in a place the public can see it.

Making sure the rides run smoothly is not just about checking the structure, it's also about making sure the people operating the rides are qualified. Every fair deals with different companies that hire workers to run the rides. The Pitt County fairs uses Playworld Amusements out of Michigan. Playworld's General Manager, Joyce Brady, says here workers go through three weeks of supervised hands-on training before they operate a ride alone. Brady says her workers sign eight-month contracts and are required to undergo a  background check and drug test. Brady says workers also can be tested for drugs throughout the duration of their contract.

This year all but one ride was granted certification. That ride will remain closed for a couple days when an electrical part is scheduled to be delivered. Once the issue with the ride has been fixed state inspectors will return to re-inspect the ride to make sure it qualifies for certification.

If you and your family want to go check it out, admission is $6 for adults, $4 for students, and children under the age of 4 are free.
     
For the first time, the fair is selling tickets online. And if you buy online, you'll save $1 on adult tickets.
     
During the week, the fair is open from 4 p.m. to 11 p.m., Saturday from 2 p.m. to midnight, and Sunday from 2 p.m. to 8 p.m.
     
And for hardcore fair goers, the State Fair opens October 17th in Raleigh


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