So how safe are these rides anyways?

24 Oct

So tonight we spent “family fun time” (as we like to call it) at the Fall Fest ’09 at St. Mary Magdalen Church in Maitland, FL.

Dennis and Sadie after riding the ferris wheel

As I watched the two things I love most in this world board the ferris wheel I couldn’t help but wonder just how safe was this gigantic contraption that can be taken down, driven across town and set up again in about 2 hours flat.  As I stood there waving with a big smile on my face I found myself praying that they would be safe and that I wouldn’t hear the sound of metal bending followed by the slow-motion tipping of the big wheel as it crashed to the earth (yes, i have definitely watched too many movies)

The whole experience got me wondering about carnival ride safety and what we can do as parents to keep our children as safe as possible at festivals. Saferparks is a great resource for all things related to amusement park safety.

Here are their Top 10 safety tips for parents: (to see the expanded list with explanations, please click here)

1.  Be a cautious consumer when choosing amusement rides.
2.  Watch the ride with your child before boarding.
3.  Always obey minimum height, age, weight, and health restrictions.
4.  Don’t put children on rides they’re afraid of.
5.  Follow any special instructions about seating order or loading.
6.  Always use the safety equipment provided, but be aware of its limitations.
7.  Watch all extremities – including feet if the ride has open sides.
8.  Teach small children what to do if they get separated from you.
9.  Trust your gut – don’t abdicate your parental responsibility or judgment to any business.
10.  Remember that amusement rides aren’t really magic.

Happy Fall everyone! I hope you all enjoy the festivals in your area. Celebrate, Have Fun and Be safe!

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