NJ fun park reopens day after Ferris wheel death - CBS News 8 - San Diego, CA News Station - KFMB Channel 8

NJ fun park reopens day after Ferris wheel death

Posted: Updated:

WILDWOOD, N.J. (AP) — A Jersey shore boardwalk amusement park that closed after an 11-year-old girl tumbled from a moving Ferris wheel to her death reopened Saturday while investigators tried to figure out what caused her fall.

A spokeswoman for Morey's Mariner's Landing Pier in Wildwood said the park reopened at noon. It was closed Friday night, hours after the death of 11-year-old Abiah Jones.

Jones was with her classmates from Pleasant Tech Academy when she plunged about 100 feet, from near the top of the ride, and landed in the passenger loading area, police and amusement park officials said. She was pronounced dead at a hospital about 45 minutes later.

The popular park was packed with children attending a special school-related promotional event called Education Extravaganza.

Police took photographs of passenger carts on the Ferris wheel, part of which was covered in white sheets, and were looking for witnesses to the girl's fall.

The Ferris wheel was to remain closed until the cause of the girl's fall is determined. It didn't appear to be mechanical, police and Morey's said.

The 156-foot-tall Ferris wheel is among several rides at the park. It was built in 1985 and most recently passed an inspection March 17, said the state Department of Community Affairs, which was examining it and investigating the girl's death.

Abiah's death was the first of a patron in the history of the Morey's organization, which has owned amusement parks at the Jersey shore since 1969, president Will Morey said.

"I'd like to say how sorry we are for the incident that occurred here," Morey said.

It appears Abiah, of Pleasantville, was alone in one of the ride's passenger gondolas, which is secured with a double latch, Morey said. The door of the gondola opens inward, making it difficult to climb out of, he said.

The spot where the girl's body landed in the passenger loading area of the ride led authorities to believe she fell from near the top of the ride because that's the trajectory she would have followed as she fell, Morey said.

According to a 2010 report from the National Safety Council, the estimated number of amusement ride-related injuries on fixed-site rides nationwide was 1,086, or 0.6 per million patron rides.

The odds of being seriously injured at one of the United States' 400 fixed-site amusement parks are 1 in 9 million, said a spokeswoman for the International Association of Amusement Parks and Attractions.

"Events like this are extremely rare, and safety is the No. 1 priority for the amusement park industry," association spokeswoman Colleen Mangone said.

About 280 million guests visit those theme parks each year, taking 1.7 billion rides, she said.

  • Local NewsMore>>

  • Brush fire near Pauma Valley 100% contained

    Brush fire near Pauma Valley 100% contained

    Thursday, May 24 2018 10:13 PM EDT2018-05-25 02:13:46 GMT

    Crews dousing the smoldering remnants of a roughly 60-acre wildfire near Pala Casino had the burn area 100 percent contained Thursday night.

     

    Crews dousing the smoldering remnants of a roughly 60-acre wildfire near Pala Casino had the burn area 100 percent contained Thursday night.

     
  • Man accused of chasing girl with machetes in La Mesa charged

    Man accused of chasing girl with machetes in La Mesa charged

    Thursday, May 24 2018 9:49 PM EDT2018-05-25 01:49:56 GMT

    A terrifying scene played out in La Mesa earlier this week when an eighth grader was chased by a man with machetes on her way to school. The man accused – who allegedly had two machetes as he chased the 13-year-old girl – was shot by police and on Thursday was charged under unusual circumstances. 

     

    A terrifying scene played out in La Mesa earlier this week when an eighth grader was chased by a man with machetes on her way to school. The man accused – who allegedly had two machetes as he chased the 13-year-old girl – was shot by police and on Thursday was charged under unusual circumstances. 

     
  • Kitten Crash: Put a little 'meow' in the mix for your next party

    Kitten Crash: Put a little 'meow' in the mix for your next party

    Thursday, May 24 2018 9:40 PM EDT2018-05-25 01:40:48 GMT

    Imagine being at work, when suddenly your boss demands you stop what you're doing and take a break. In Thursday's Zevely Zone, Jeff's in the East Village with the San Diego Humane Society's first "kitten crash." 

     

    Imagine being at work, when suddenly your boss demands you stop what you're doing and take a break. In Thursday's Zevely Zone, Jeff's in the East Village with the San Diego Humane Society's first "kitten crash." 

     
Powered by Frankly
All content © Copyright 2000 - 2018 Midwest Television, Inc. All Rights Reserved.
For more information on this site, please read our Privacy Policy, and Terms of Service, and Ad Choices.