Sixteen people have been injured, three seriously, after a fairground ride collapsed in central China.
The accident occurred at an amusement park in Shaoyang county in Hunan province on Saturday afternoon. Footage published online showed how the “flying chairs” suddenly crashed to the ground leaving several people injured.
A visitor to the fair surnamed Deng told The Beijing News that he had been queuing for the ride when he suddenly heard the malfunction alarm sound as the chairs were swinging through the air.
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“The swing ride gathered speed and was going faster and faster, then it fell off and hit the ground,” said Deng. “Most of the injured were onlookers. Fortunately we ran away quickly, otherwise we would have been hit as well”.
The local government said the ride had suffered a “mechanical glitch”.
The accident happened on the second day of the Lunar New Year holiday, a time when amusement parks are extremely busy.
“The facility went through security checks less than a month before the Lunar New Year and the inspection showed everything was normal. The switch malfunctioned when the accident occurred,” the local government said, according to Jiemian News, a Chinese news portal.
After the accident, the amusement park was closed and some staff members have been taken into custody. An investigation into the cause has been launched.
Similar accidents have happened in other Chinese fairs before. In 2014 a 12-year-old girl was injured in a fall from a swing ride, and in 2017 20 people were injured in Gansu when a ride collapsed.
In France in 2019, a woman was killed and another seriously injured after their swing chair fell off a funfair ride.
This article 16 injured after Chinese fairground ride collapses first appeared on South China Morning Post