State takes over investigation into ferris wheel incident at York Fair

The Pennsylvania Department of Agriculture is investigating after two people were injured following an accident at the York Fair.

It happened around 8:00 p.m. Friday night at the Giant Ferris Wheel near the midway.

The state posts inspection and incident reports for rides on their website. However, as of Monday those reports were still unavailable. The state would only comment that the investigation is open.

In a news conference on Saturday officials with the York Fair addressed the incident.

“Nothing like this has happened in the nine years we’ve had a working relationship with Deggeller Attractions," said Bryan Blair, CEO, York Fair.

Thirty-seven of the fifty rides at the York Fair are owned by Deggeller Attractions, the company that owns the ferris wheel.

Officials say the ferris wheel was inspected by the vendor Friday morning, prior to the incident.

“When they can look at us and say it’s safe to go, we’re going to take them at their word that it is safe to go," added Blair.

Bryan Dickinson of Hanover says he and his wife saw it happen right in front of them.

He says his wife was on the ride directly next to the ferris wheel while Dickinson was standing below in front of the ride watching.

“My wife starts freaking out, she starts screaming he fell get me out of here," added Dickinson.

FOX43 reached out Deggeller attractions for comment, however did not hear back. The company's website does have a safety section however that said this in part about its rides:

"Safety at Deggeller Attractions is our top priority. Prior to opening, each piece of equipment is carefully inspected by a skilled midway manager and a ride superintendent using a certified inspection checklist, specific to each attraction. In addition to our daily inspections, our equipment is also inspected by local state and municipal inspection agencies and fire departments."

It is unclear if the accident was due to human error or a ride malfunction at this time.

The ferris wheel is headed to the State Fair of Virginia next.

Representatives for that fair released this statement to FOX43:

"The State Fair of Virginia® will review any published findings from the current investigation of the York Fair incident. Those findings may influence what actions, if any, we take before the Fair opens on Sept. 27, and to speculate on those actions at this time would be premature. All rides at the State Fair of Virginia are inspected prior to the Fair’s opening by a team of state-certified inspectors, and the rides receive a daily inspection prior to operation. Rider safety requirements are displayed at each ride. Virginia law requires riders to obey all warnings and directions and behave in a manner that will not cause or contribute to injuring themselves or others."

- Sarah Hallett, The Meadow Event Park

Notice: you are using an outdated browser. Microsoft does not recommend using IE as your default browser. Some features on this website, like video and images, might not work properly. For the best experience, please upgrade your browser.