SPRINGFIELD (Aug. 1, 2017) The Illinois Department of Labor (IDOL) announced today its process to lift the suspension of amusement rides similar to the “Fire Ball,” which was involved in the Ohio State Fair incident last week. These rides include the “Freak Out” and “Extreme.” IDOL is maintaining its suspension of the operation of the “Fire Ball” ride while the investigation in Ohio continues.
After receiving more information and guidance from manufacturers, operators, investigators, and other safety professionals, IDOL will begin re-permitting suspended rides that pass nondestructive testing (NDT) and IDOL re-inspection.
“We’re taking extra precautions to ensure the safety of all carnival-goers statewide,” IDOL Acting Director Joe Beyer said. “That’s why we are requiring additional third-party testing and inspections. While we hope that the public can enjoy these rides again as soon as possible, we first want to make sure the rides have undergone a rigorous safety review in light of the tragic incident in Ohio.”
For a “Freak Out” ride to be re-permitted, it is required to pass NDT, which involves an independent engineer evaluating the strength and durability of the rides’ parts. NDT will scientifically test for cracks, corrosion, and other structural weaknesses.
The “Freak Out” rides, along with the “Extreme” ride, also must undergo an additional IDOL safety inspection. Amusement Ride and Attraction Safety Division inspectors will thoroughly reexamine the mechanics of each ride.
IDOL will immediately reinstate individual permits after rides pass both NDT and re-inspection. These safety evaluations are expected to be conducted this week.
For more information about the Illinois Department of Labor, visit the website at http://labor.illinois.gov. IDOL can also be found on Facebook @ILDeptofLabor or on Twitter @ILDeptofLabor.