Ozark Empire Fair officials inspect, sanitize rides during pandemic

Published: Jul. 30, 2020 at 8:17 PM CDT
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SPRINGFIELD, Mo. (KY3) - Whether its the Tilt-a-Whirl or a roller coaster, everyone has their favorite ride at the Ozark Empire Fair.

“I am excited to ride the Ferris wheel with my mom,” said Wayne Charles.

Just like Charles, visitors traveled from all around the Ozarks with masks in hand, ready to take on the rides, but with safety in mind.

“I don’t want to get that corona,” said CJ Elander.

The fair has about 25 different rides for all ages. This year, officials are inspecting the rides about an hour before the fair opens. Hand sanitizer is available at every entrance and exit of a ride

“We have state inspectors that come out here and have been out here. We have about four guys that are state inspectors that have been out here since day one. While we are setting up, they are inspecting the rides, so that’s a good level of safety,” said Gary Zaitshik, General Manager of Wade Shows

In addition to being checked for mechanical issues, the rides receive a deep clean at least every two hours

“First, we wash the ride entirely. Then we are going to get the fogger out which is also going to kill bacteria, we fog the seats, the lap bars all points where people are touching things, we fog it all,” said Zaitshik.

This year, rides have also been spread out more on the midway, leaving more room in between each one.

“The reason behind that is to create more social distancing space,” said Zaitshik.

All ride operators will also be wearing masks and getting temperature checks before coming to work

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