December 28, 1988  
Release # 88-116

Washington, D.C. -- After a preliminary investigation of an amusement park accident that killed one person and injured at least six others at the Broward County, Florida Fair in November 1988, the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) has asked owners and operators of all "Monster" amusement rides nationwide to undertake immediate metallurgical inspections of the ride to protect the public.

According to the Commission, the Hallendale, Florida accident occurred when one of six sweeps of the ride broke, causing four cars at the end of the ride's arm to fall to the ground. The ride was operated by the James Strates Shows of Orlando, Florida and was manufactured by the Eyerly Aircraft Company of Salem, Oregon. Eyerly no lonqer makes amusement rides.

CPSC said a 1982 safety bulletin issued by Eyerly Aircraft company emphasized that the sweeps of the "Monster" need to be thoroughly examined visually and with non-destructive test methods to identify cracking of critical structural areas. Such testing methods include magnetic particle technique, ultrasonic measurements, and dye-penetrant inspection. A preliminary investigation indicates that a crack in one of the sweeps may have caused the Florida accident. There was no indication, however, that the crack had been painted over.

Although the agency has no jurisdiction over permanent amusement rides, the inspection notice will be supplied to both permanent and mobile "Monster" ride owners. The CPSC said it was sending copies of the inspection plan to all identified "Monster" ride owners in an effort to ensure total ride safety.

The Commission staff said it was also asking state amusement ride inspectors to assist in implementing the inspection program. Presently, 32 states regulate amusement rides in one form or another.

The Commission's investigation of the Florida accident is continuing. Meanwhile it will monitor inspections by the owners of the rides and take additional action as warranted. Rides similar to the Monster while not affected by this inspection program are also under review by the Commission staff.