NewsMontana and Regional News


Young girl injured after falling off of a ride at the Western Montana Fair

Posted at 9:04 AM, Aug 10, 2018
and last updated 2018-08-16 10:17:14-04

(MISSOULA) A young girl was injured while riding the Typhoon at the Western Montana Fair in Missoula on Thursday.

Emergency personnel responded to reports of an injured girl at the Missoula County Fairgrounds at around 6:45 p.m.

Missoula City Fire Captain Garrett Venters says the 11-year-old girl was conscious and alert when they arrived at the scene. 

He said she was oriented and talking when taken by an ambulance to a Missoula hospital. 

She was wearing a neck brace when loaded onto the ambulance. 

The ride was shut down after the incident, and the company that owns the Typhoon is investigating the incident. 

There is no word yet on how far the child fell.

Northstar Amusement of Billings owns and operates the ride. 

The International Association of Amusement Parks and Attractions says on its website that 44 of 50 states regulate amusement parks. The six without state oversight are Alabama, Mississippi, Montana, Nevada, Wyoming, and Utah.

Katie Vaughan posted on Facebook: "I was standing nearby when this accident happened. The other people getting off the ride said the safety bar flew up, and they had to pull it down quickly to stay secure."

We will update you if we get more details.

(JULY 19, 2017) Thrilling carnival rides are designed to test your fears of heights or flipping upside down, but they’re not supposed to make anyone actually fear for their safety.

"The only person that’s ever been hurt on my ride in 23 years is me," said Hoss, Northstar Amusements ride supervisor.

In his entire career with Northstar Amusements, Hoss says he’s never had any major injuries.

Although he said there have been some minor injuries, they have mostly been a result of people acting inappropriately. He is confident that parents should feel comfortable allowing their kids on the rides.

"My kids ride them all the time, I’m not afraid to put my children on them," Hoss said.

To ensure the safety of the rides each one has a checklist that is reviewed every day and Hoss says he personally handles any issue right away.

He has 40 employees and six ride foremen – each must undergo a rigorous training session and spent many hours with the ride supervisor before running a ride on their own.

"We don’t just grab somebody off the street and throw them on the Ferris wheel. If it’s a new person, they’ll start like on the glass house where there are no buttons they just have to take tickets," Hoss said.

Hoss said employees that show capability and intelligence can move up to the more complicated rides such as the Ferris wheel. And those that aren’t ready will continue working on the calmer rides such as the House of Mirrors.

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