A number of recent accidents at theme parks and county fairs across the country have shed light on issues surrounding the safety and maintenance of certain types of amusement rides.
One of the most recent accidents happened at a fair in Connecticut when the swing ride suddenly froze. The malfunction sent riders hurling into each other and into the ride itself. In all, 12 children and 1 adult were injured as a result.
The successor company of the ride's manufacturer has acknowledged that the accident could have been prevented by regular, routine maintenance.
Jeff Roth, vice president of administration for Chance Rides Incorporated, told the Associated Press that the company determined that the accident happened because a metal shaft that helps spin the ride broke. He said the shaft broke due to wear and tear over the years and because it hadn't been adjusted properly.
Many people are also injured at amusement parks and carnivals on roller coasters.
Two other recent high profile amusement ride accidents on roller coasters may have been preventable if lap bars had been secured properly.
In one of the cases, a woman fell approximately 75 feet to her death after she was ejected from a roller coaster car on the Texas Giant at Six Flags in Arlington, Texas.
The woman reportedly had expressed concern to an employee that the lap bar was not secure before the ride even started.
Although data is limited, a study by the consumer product safety commission found that between 2,800 and 4,300 people are treated for amusement ride related accidents every year.