Tennessee House OKs tightened amusement park safety rules

Tennessee House OKs tightened amusement park safety rules

May 6th, 2017 by Associated Press in Politics State

Law enforcement cordon off the area surrounding the Ferris wheel Monday, Aug. 8, 2016, after three people fell from the ride during a county fair in Greenville, Tenn. Baileyton police Officer Kenneth Bitner is visible at right. (O.J. Early/The Greeneville Sun via AP)

Photo by O.J. Early

NASHVILLE, Tenn. — Tennessee could soon tighten amusement park safety regulations after people were injured on rides in two incidents last year.

The Tennessee House passed a bill Thursday with heightened safety requirements. The Senate approved it Wednesday, so it heads to Gov. Bill Haslam.

In September, eight people were hospitalized after a ride shut down at the Delta Fair in Memphis.

At the Greene County Fair in August, three girls fell 30 to 45 feet and were injured when a Ferris wheel basket overturned.

The legislation would increase inspections and let state regulators hire inspectors or keep using third-party groups.

It would require operators to be at least 16 years old, running one ride at a time and present while it runs.

It would let injured people sue ride owners and operators.