New details have emerged about the amusement park thrill ride malfunction that left one dead and seven others injured at the Ohio State Fair last month. As pointed out by CBS News, the manufacturer of the Fire Ball ride said “excessive corrosion” was discovered to be the cause of the deadly incident. Netherlands-based KMG International shared the news Sunday on Facebook, following a company investigation.
"It was determined that excessive corrosion on the interior of the gondola support beam dangerously reduced the beam's wall thickness over the years," the statement read. "This finally led to a catastrophic failure of the ride during operation."
KMG said the cause was determined after they sent a team of investigators to Columbus, Ohio, where they visited the scene, reviewed video footage, and conducted a metallurgical inspection of the ride. The manufacturer said it has collaborated with industry safety experts to develop an "inspection protocol in the form of a Safety Bulletin" in order to avoid future accidents.
KMG said the ride was 18-years-old.
The Fire Ball is described as an "aggressive thrill" ride that swings like a pendulum while rows of seats spin up to 40 feet above the ground. On July 26, the structure collapsed while in motion, causing the gondola to detach from the rest of the ride. Tyler Jarrell, an 18-year-old who was enlisted in the U.S. Marine Corps, was the only passenger who died during the accident.
According to CBS News, Jarrell’s family intends to file a wrongful death suit.
Shortly after the catastrophe, Gov. John Kasich ordered all of the State Fair rides to shut down until inspections of all the attractions were completed.
"I am terribly saddened by this accident, by the loss of life and that people were injured enjoying Ohio's fair," Kasich said in a statement.