Talley Amusement replaces Amusements of America as ride operator at Ohio State Fair


Talley Amusement is replacing Amusements of America at this year's Ohio State Fair.

It's the first time the fair has changed the amusement ride provider in 26 years. To view a full release on the change from the fair, click here.

The change came after the July 26, 2017 accident when the Fire Ball ride broke apart with a full load of passengers on board killing 18-year-old Tyler Jarrell and injuring seven others.

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Talley Amusements touts itself as operating 50 rides including the KMG Beast. KMG is the same company that designed the Fire Ball ride.

When 10TV contacted the fair about whether that ride will operate this year, a spokesperson said, " No, because it's a KMG ride."

Talley Amusement is a 5th generation amusement family-owned ride operator from Texas. Its website claims to have over 200 years of combined experience at providing rides to fairs across the United States.

"My husband and I kind of look at it as we're coming into the Ohio State Fair with a rain cloud over us right off the bat," Talley Amusement co-owner Mary Talley said. "So knowing this, my husband and I discussed it and we said 'how can we change what people think about what we do?'"

A search of amusement ride databases shows the company has a relatively safe track record.

According to Amusement Safety, it found just five neck related injuries from 2004-2012.

The company has a team of 150 workers that delivers, installs and operates each ride.

"All of our staff, when they set up, they are in uniform when they set up," Talley said. "They have safety first shirts on, they wear hard hats."

As an extra layer of surety, the vendor hired their own ride inspector to double check the infrastructure of every ride before the state comes in.

"We do everything that's visual that we can see with our eyes and we can touch everything," contracted ride inspector Lewis Merz said. "If we happen to notice anything or something kind of catches our eye, then we will go even more internal. If we have to, we'll have them take the ride apart."

The Texas Department of Insurance recorded just one incident of a slip and fall on one of its rides 2006 but nothing after that.

State officials are expected to inspect the rides on Monday, before the Ohio State Fair opens on Wednesday, July 24th.