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Statement on Amusement Ride Safety from Paul Noland, President and CEO, International Association of Amusement Parks and Attractions (IAAPA)

August 12, 2016

We are saddened by the news of the last few days and our thoughts are with those affected. While the timing is coincidental and investigations are on-going, these appear to be unrelated events, occurring at different facilities on different types of attractions.

One injury is one too many in our industry. Delivering the highest levels of safety is fundamental to our industry’s existence and is a part of everything we do. 

Safety is a consideration in every aspect of our operations including how our members design, manufacture, maintain, inspect, and operate attractions. 

There are comprehensive, international safety standards developed with the input of government officials, consumer advocates, and industry experts. We follow those standards and they are updated on a regular basis.

The safety guidelines within our industry have resulted in 335 million guests safely enjoying 1.6 billion rides at 400 U.S. amusement parks. Injuries are extremely rare. In fact, the chance of being seriously injured on a ride at a U.S. amusement park is 1 in 16 million. To put that in perspective, you are more likely being struck by lightning, than you are to be injured while riding an attraction at a park.

We believe strong local and state regulation based on ASTM International standards is the most effective government oversight for the industry. The states need the flexibility to create and enforce laws relevant to the attractions in their state and that’s what they have done. There is no evidence federal oversight or a national agency would improve on the already excellent safety record of the industry.

Safety tips for enjoying amusement rides are listed here and safety tips for visiting water parks are listed here.