Last month the Royal Adelaide Show was the scene of an amusement ride fatality involving an eight year old girl. On 12 September, the girl fell 10 metres to her death from the Show’s new ride, Airmaxx 360. In the aftermath, the Show’s Chief Executive Mr John Rothwell was reported by Fairfax as stating that all rides at the show were subject to daily checks and a national compliance audit by regulatory authorities. The ride in question was a new addition to the Show, and it had appeared previously at shows in Sydney and Brisbane earlier in the year with no safety-related complications. The Star reported that complaints had been raised by riders of the Airmaxx 360 prior to the day of the incident, including insecure seatbelts, and several shut downs due to dysfunction. It was reported that the victim met the ride’s minimum height requirement of 160cm; however there are currently no age and weight restrictions in place for riders. It was also reported that the ride was inspected and declared safe weeks ago, but has since been shutdown indefinitely as it is subject to an investigation which at the time of this article, was ongoing.
Another ‘Traffic Jam’ ride at the Show was also shut down two days after the incident due to the emergence of a photo allegedly showing a child on the ride who did not meet the height requirement as reported by The Australian.
While the cause of the fatality is as yet unknown, the incident highlights the importance of strict compliance to design-related safety procedures for all amusement rides.