Developmentally disabled man slips out of Ferris wheel at Mississippi Valley Fair

Posted Wednesday, August 3, 2005 10:10 AM | Contributed by Dan D McD

A developmentally disabled man riding the Ferris wheel Tuesday at the Mississippi Valley Fair in Davenport slipped out of his car and dropped between the wheel's spokes before being rescued by six employees of Evans United Rides, which operates the ride.

Read more from The Quad-City Times.

Wednesday, August 3, 2005 10:43 AM
Davenport's Handicapped Development Center may think they are taking clients to the fair again next year... We'll see if they sing the same tune after the settlement!
Wednesday, August 3, 2005 11:14 AM
The entire thing was caught on video that our local news showed last night. The video showed the person he was riding with hanging on to him as he was dangling from the seat. Then, that person lost their grip and he fell, bouncing between some rails before he grabbed hold of something. I'll never forget the frightened look on that poor guys face as he was hanging on for dear life.
Wednesday, August 3, 2005 1:36 PM
Being disabled myself, and having dealt with developmentally disabled people, I think that they should not have even been allowed to ride. The rides are dangerous for them When my old school took the mentally challenged kids to the state fair, they always stay away from the midway. As much as I believe in an equal ride experience for everyone, those types of people shouldn't even be on rides at all because of the risks.
Wednesday, August 3, 2005 1:53 PM
I’ve occasionally run into this issue with my job. I work as a physical therapist in the school district (Las Vegas). There have been about 3-4 cases where I’ve chaperoned my students on a coaster at The Strip. I probably have about as many requests from students/parents when I’ve refused and broke a kids heart.

I always struggle with whether I’m doing the right thing or not. This is especially stressful when I have a license to protect. It comes down to deciding between a person’s ability to “live life to the fullest” versus the liability issue should the unthinkable happen.

This is truly a case of damned if you do and damned if you don’t for the ride operators. They have always let my students ride IF I’m with them. I can’t imagine it is good PR to refuse ridership (See the recent Tampa Busch Garden’s cases). However, should an accident happen, guess who is open to lawsuits…?

Wednesday, August 3, 2005 4:17 PM
I just saw this on the news. Pretty crazy/scary stuff.
Sunday, August 7, 2005 5:16 AM
I've worked with special needs kids/adults for almost a decade and I can tell you that taking away their right to ride should not be done. What should be done is having competent staff that knows each clients' abilities and limits. The range of these abilities is so wide that it would be wrong to not allow people under a broad classification. Being different shouldn't deprive people of the joys of life. And I personally don't see it as ride operators' or the parks' responsibility as to who can ride but rather the staff that supervise the developmentally disabled.

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