The annual Devon Days festival in Alberta, Canada, is set to continue its festivities this weekend, including the highly anticipated midway rides. However, this year’s event has been overshadowed by safety concerns following recent incidents at the Farmers’ Days fair in Stony Plain. Despite these challenges, the organizers, Wild Rose Shows, have undergone a thorough safety review to ensure the rides are safe for attendees. This article delves into the events leading up to the safety review, the measures taken by the organizers, and the community’s response to the ongoing situation.
Devon Days Midway Gets Green Light
During the Farmers’ Days fair in Stony Plain, two attractions operated by Wild Rose Shows, The Construction Zone and The Hurricane, were involved in accidents resulting in injuries to riders. Reports indicate that on The Hurricane, two adults were hit when the ride unexpectedly started moving as they were changing seats to balance their weight. One of them suffered significant injuries, requiring stitches on her leg and sustaining abrasions on her arms and face. Additionally, a child was taken to the hospital earlier in the day, although details about their injuries remain undisclosed.
Safety Measures and Review
Following the incidents, Wild Rose Shows faced the necessity of undergoing a reinspection by the Alberta Elevating Devices & Amusement Ride Safety Association (AEDARSA). In addition to the AEDARSA review, the Town of Devon imposed two additional demands on the organizers: safety retraining for Wild Rose Shows staff and confirmation of their ability to provide a safety-certified individual for every three rides in the midway. To ensure a comprehensive evaluation, joint inspections were carried out by AEDARSA and Alberta Occupational Health and Safety officers in both Devon and Brooks, where Wild Rose Shows was scheduled to operate another midway.
Devon’s Approval and Organizers’ Commitment
After careful examination, Wild Rose Shows met the criteria set by the Town of Devon and received the green light for the Devon Days midway rides. Owner Mike Kryzanowski, who has been in the carnival business for over 40 years, expressed remorse for the incidents and pledged to do everything necessary to prevent similar incidents from happening again. Kryzanowski personally inspected all the rides in Devon, and the entire Wild Rose team cooperated with officials and worked diligently to address safety concerns.
Community Response and Rebuilding Trust
According to MSN, Devon Mayor Jeff Craddock emphasized the importance of ensuring the rides’ safety and praised Wild Rose Shows for their cooperation and commitment to meeting the town’s demands. The mayor acknowledged that the decision to allow the rides to proceed ultimately rested with provincial authorities but affirmed the town’s dedication to safeguarding its residents and visitors. Craddock, both as the mayor and a grandfather planning to bring his grandchildren to the rides, emphasized the paramount importance of their well-being.
Despite the unfortunate incidents, the Devon Days festival is moving forward, albeit with two rides, The Construction Zone and The Hurricane, temporarily removed from the rotation for further inspection and review. The AEDARSA announced that The Hurricane would undergo a comprehensive inspection of all components, while the Construction Zone would be examined for electrical components and wiring to determine the source of an electrical shock.