Fox 54 looks into fair ride safety


The sight of a ride breaking and killing a man at the Ohio State Fair in July is embedded in the minds of many still. It left a handful of others injured.

Now, some folks are questioning the safety of fair rides. However, inspectors at the Western Carolina State Fair in Aiken say you don’t need to worry.

“There’s no reason to have a fear of any of my rides here at the Aiken fair. We go through rigorous inspections above and beyond what’s asked of us. And my children rides these rides,” said Thomas Popovich, Ride Supervisor and Head Safety Coordinator.

Inspectors say they go over every ride at the fair every day before they open. Not only that, but the rides are heavily inspected before the fair even starts.

Popovich explained, “You get a state inspection, a third party which is a different organization that inspects. Then the fair itself brought in another third party. So there was 3 sets of inspectors this week. And then my personal inspection that gets done.”

Not only are the rides safe, management says the grounds are too.

“We have security at our gates, security at every exit, security on the fairgrounds whether it be the Aiken County Sheriff’s Department or one of our hired security companies,” explained Tommy Molony, Manager of the Western Carolina State Fair.

Tommy says he takes prides in knowing he runs a safe event. He loves to see the same families return year after year.

“It gets in their blood where they can’t miss the fair either way. Whether it be the corn dog or it be a special ride.”

The Western Carolina State Fair is running through the 29th.

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