Ferris wheel accident and water slide death prompt safety concerns nationwide

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waterslide (Schwab Family | AP Photo)

One day after a 10-year-old boy was killed on a water park slide in Kansas, three girls fell from a Ferris wheel at a county fair in Tennessee. Both incidents are raising questions about the safety of amusement rides and how they're regulated.

The incidents remain under investigation. In fact, the Ferris wheel accident has prompted the county fair in Tennessee to shut down all of its rides until they're deemed safe.

RELATED: 3 children hospitalized after falling from Ferris wheel in Tennessee

Three girls were hospitalized when something went horribly wrong at the ride at a county fair. The Ferris wheel cabin got caught on a cart underneath, tipped nearly 90 degrees and sent the kids falling down anywhere from 30 to 45 feet.

"I just feel bad for the little kids, you know. They just screamed a little bit and then they just hit the ground and then just land there," said Lisa Bruner, witness.

"Two of the children were alert and answering questions. I can't tell you whether the third was or not, but the third child was -- does have a head injury," said Tim Davis, Greeneville Police Department.

RELATED: Gruesome details revealed in boys water slide death

Meanwhile in Kansas, there is still shock over the death at a popular water park. Water slides are among the most dangerous attractions at amusement parks, according to the Consumer Product Safety Commission, there were 7,200 water slide injuries last year alone.

"It was a very loud boom, boom. I knew immediately that someone had fallen off the raft," said witness, Steve Castaneda.

Police confirm 10-year old Caleb Schwab, the son of a Kansas lawmaker, died of a neck injury when he was tossed from his raft at the end what's known as the tallest water slide in the world. Two years ago, early safety checks of this slide showed sand bag dummies going airborne. It prompted officials to add seatbelts and safety nets before the ride opened.

In California it's the state's amusement ride and tramway unit that's in charge of inspecting and approving amusement rides. There are different requirements for portable rides, like the ones you would see at a fair, versus permanent rides that you would see at a place like California's Great America.

Click here for more on California's regulations.
Related Topics:
newsamusement parkamusement rideu.s. & worldaccidentTennessee
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