Carnival ride partially collapses in Maryland, no injuries reported

Couple wants number of inspections to change
Posted at 6:23 PM, May 14, 2018
and last updated 2018-05-14 20:48:25-04

A Dundalk couple says they’re trying to figure out who’s responsible after a carnival accident on Friday.

A day at a carnival for David Nagel, his wife Stacy, and their 2-year-old grandson was going great until David and Levi were on board the carnival’s merry-go-round.

“I grabbed my grandson,” David said. “Ran away from the [the carousel] and got my grandson over the fence to my wife, and then I went back to make sure that everybody else was ok because there was a young lady with two younger kids behind me.”

Part of the merry-go-round collapsed with close to 40 people on or nearby.

Stacy watched in horror, capturing the entire incident on her smartphone.

“It was his first time ever on a merry-go-round. He’s two. He never wanted to get on before and we didn’t push him. He just wanted to get on the merry-go-round so we had to film it. Thank gosh we did,” she said.

Firefighters along with ride inspectors worked on the ride for almost an hour.

Then the ride went back into service – not against protocol according to state inspectors.

The ride services’ owner, Shaw & Sons Amusements, says the state handles inspections.

“A major breakdown is a stoppage of operation from any cause that results in damage, failure, or breakage of a structural or stress bearing part of an amusement attraction,” Matt Helminiak, the Commissioner of Labor and Industry – over the amusement ride and safety inspection division, said.

By phone, he said if no one was injured or if there weren’t a major breakdown, the state wouldn’t even be alerted.

The incident on Friday wasn’t enough to shut the ride down.

Still, Helminiak says the state will look at what went wrong with the merry-go-round.

“In the case of a mobile ride, every time that ride is set up, a state inspector inspects it before anybody is allowed to ride it, but the operators themselves have a daily inspection requirement and so they inspect it and keep a log of inspections and then have that available for us,” he said.

An unsettling feeling for David, who says he wants to see a change in the inspection process, no matter if someone is injured.

“I went, number one, to bring back memories and number two – to share joy. It was supposed to be a joyous time. It was until we got on the merry-go-round,” David said.

The state will look at the merry-go-round before it’s set up again.

No matter the issue, it’s up to the company to get the ride fixed before anyone is able to get on it again.