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Officials: Land of Illusion water park faces possible fine for operating unlicensed inflatable

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Posted at 6:36 PM, Aug 02, 2021
and last updated 2021-08-02 18:36:18-04

A Butler County water park has been issued a notice for a hearing after it allegedly operated an unlicensed inflatable on the ground, the Journal-News reported.

Katie Boyer, public information officer for the Ohio Department of Agriculture, said the notice was sent today, and Land of Illusion Aqua Adventures Park representatives in Madison Twp. will have 30 days to respond. She said the water park has a right to a hearing before the $500 fine can be issued.

When ODA officials inspected the rides on July 16, there were three devices (a bungee, rock wall and inflatable slide) that the park wanted to operate on the ground, she said.

Upon inspection, the facility did not have the required documentation to complete the inspections and receive licenses, and ODA said they could not operate, Boyer said.

ODA was awaiting completion of documentation from the company. Once the documentation was secured, ODA would inspect these devices, and permission to operate could have been granted, according to Boyer.

Then a few days later, photos of one of the rides being operated was sent to the state, she said.

Aqua Adventures has been criticized by the public after Mykiara Jones apparently drowned there July 20 while swimming without a life jacket. Her body was found in the murky water 30 minutes after she was last seen that evening.

Jones, an incoming freshman at Middletown High School, was flown by CareFlight to Dayton Children’s Hospital, where she died. The Montgomery County Coroner’s Office hasn’t released a cause or manner of death, and it may take several weeks before results are known, according to an official.

Rep. Thomas Hall, R-Madison Twp., said he wants to create legislation to correct the “loophole” that allows the water park to operate without state regulations because it’s located on a pond and not a swimming pool.

“We need to do whatever we can to keep this from happening again,” Hall said.

Hall said he plans to meet with Butler County General Health District officials and state legislators this week to discuss possible solutions. He called changing the way ponds are governed “a pretty easy fix.”