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Carnival ride accident kills 1, injures 9

A freak carnival accident has put the spot on the safety of amusement rides, serving as a timely reminder this coming Christmas season when many people take pleasure in amusement parks and funfairs.

A defective “caterpillar” ride in a carnival along McArthur Highway in Karuhatan, Valenzuela went haywire Wednesday night, killing one and injuring nine others.  Initial reports said the ride failed to stop, pinning and dragging passenger Neil Rafols to its tracks. The incident happened at around 10 p.m.

Television reports showed Rafol’s bloodied body being taken away by emergency medical responders from the scene. Rafols was on the ride with his wife and a nephew. Both sustained injuries.

The injured victims, mostly women and children, were rushed to Valenzuela General Hospital and Jose Reyes Hospital to receive medical treatment, the police said. The police added that the ride’s operators immediately fled the scene.

There are big and popular fairs in Metro Manila that usually open at the onset of the holiday season. However, there are also small ones that usually operate as traveling carnivals in the outskirts of the metropolis year-round.

These small fairs, usually found in vacant lots in the cities, cater to the members of the lower economic class. The rides and games are very cheap. Consequently the quality is also poor.  Overall technical operations of the rides and games are unregulated. Thus, accidents are common and unfortunate. #