On Wednesday, a ride at the Ohio State Fair called the “Fireball” broke down while in use, injuring seven and causing one death.
The teen who passed away—18-year-old Tyler Jarrell of Columbus—had recently graduated from high school and planned to join the Marines.
According to records released by the Ohio State Highway Patrol on Thursday, the ride had passed multiple inspections in the days preceding the malfunction.
“It’s been looked at about three or four times over the course of two days,” said Michael Vartorella, the chief ride inspector for the Ohio Division of Amusement Ride Safety according to BuzzFeed News. “It was inspected at a couple of different stages and it was signed off.”
The records show that the ride had received sign-offs from various consultants, Amusements of America, the Ohio Department of Agriculture, and other supervisors on its safety, maintenance, and operations. Additionally, several components including the ride’s swing drive had been replaced as recently as May.
Despite passing all inspections, the ride broke apart in mid air during a ride, creating a horrific scene.
A crowd of people witnessed the tragedy, including Twitter user @obey_jbell who managed to capture it on video.
In the video, (warning: video is graphic and plays automatically) the pendulum-style ride appears to fall apart as passengers ride, throwing them through the air to the concrete below.
“I was right next in line so I saw the buttons the guy was hitting,” Brittney Neal, who was next in line for the ride, told Cleveland.com. “He hit the emergency stop button, and as soon as he hit that, the whole cart started flying off because the force was so big from the big ride.”
Also waiting in line was Kaylie Bellomy, who told Columbus NBC station WCMH, “Everybody was running. I got ran over trying to get out of the way. I just don’t think I’ll ever ride a ride ever again.”
One of Rhonda Burgess’s sons was standing in line at another ride near the Fireball when the malfunction occurred. “The ride had four riders per cart,” she told CNN.
“This piece snapped off and the riders came out of the cart … at least two [people] flew through the air at least 20 feet before landing on their backs on the concrete.”
Ohio Governor John Kasich referred to the incident as “a nightmare.”
He went on to apparently defend the State Fair staff noting that “you can inspect, and you can reinspect,” but “accidents do happen.”
In response to the malfunction, several states around the country including Oregon, Illinois, and California and have ordered the shutdown of similar rides.
Additionally, the manufacturer of the rides, Dutch company KMG, has ordered operators to suspend use of the ride until further notice. Currently, there are 55 rides of the same model located around the world.
“Our deepest sympathies go out to all who were involved or affected by this tragic accident,” the company said in a statement issued Thursday.
The company says that it is investigating the incident.