Officials: State fair attendance down after deadly accident

(WDTN Photo/ Dana Smith)

COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) — Officials say a deadly thrill ride accident on the opening day of this year’s Ohio State Fair contributed to a significant drop in attendance.

Officials said Tuesday that more than 800,000 people attended the fair this year, the lowest number since it switched to its 12-day format in 2004. Last year, more than 920,000 attended.

Tyler Jarrell died from blunt force trauma injuries after being tossed into the air when the Fire Ball ride broke apart July 26. Seven others were injured. Four remained hospitalized last week, including one woman in a coma.

The Dutch manufacturer of the ride says excessive corrosion on a support beam led to a “catastrophic failure.” It ordered similar rides shut down worldwide after the accident.

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