700 Children's® – A Blog by Pediatric Experts

Carnival Ride Safety

Jul 12, 2022
carnival ride safety

Growing up, I remember the excitement each year when a carnival took over the field behind my middle school for a long weekend in May, and then in college when the state fair rolled around each summer. Now as a mom and aunt, I see that excitement on sweet little faces and do my best to let them have fun while keeping safety in mind.

A study by researchers in the Center for Injury Research and Policy found that, over a 20-year period, there were more than 27,000 injuries to kids under 18 serious enough to be treated in hospital emergency departments from mobile rides, like those found at fairs and festivals. That’s about 1,350 injuries each year. More than 70 percent of the injuries occurred during the warm summer months of May through September – that’s more than 6 injuries a day during these months.

Some tips for keeping safe on amusement rides include:

  • Always follow all posted height, age, weight and health restrictions.
  • Make sure to follow any special seating order and/or loading instructions.
  • Always use safety equipment such as seat belts and safety bars.
  • Keep your hands and feet inside the ride at all times.
  • Know your child. If you don’t think they will be able to follow the rules, keep them off the ride.
  • Take a look at the ride and trust your instincts. If you are worried about the safety of the ride, choose a different activity.

The Center for Injury Research and Policy of the Abigail Wexner Research Institute at Nationwide Children’s Hospital has compiled additional helpful information on carnival ride safety.

Featured Expert

Laura Dattner, MA
Center for Injury Research and Policy

Laura Dattner is a research writer in the Center for Injury Research and Policy. With both a health communications and public health background, she works to translate pediatric injury research into meaningful, accurate messages which motivate the public to make positive behavior changes.

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700 Children’s® features the most current pediatric health care information and research from our pediatric experts – physicians and specialists who have seen it all. Many of them are parents and bring a special understanding to what our patients and families experience. If you have a child – or care for a child – 700 Children’s was created especially for you.