CITY TARGETS ILLEGAL AMUSEMENT RIDES
AT STREET FAIRS
AND BLOCK PARTIES TO ENSURE SAFETY THIS SUMMER
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
June 25, 2004
Contacts: Dina Improta, DCA, 212.487.4283 / Ilyse Fink or
Jennifer Givner, DOB, 212.566.3473
Agencies Remind Operators of Licensing
Requirements and Issue
Parent Safety Tips to Ensure Summer Season is Fun and Safe
The New York City Departments of Consumer
Affairs (DCA) and Buildings (DOB) today announced inspectors
from both agencies will step-up enforcement this summer
against unlicensed amusement rides that could pose serious
safety risks at summer street fairs, block parties, and
festivals citywide. Temporary rides including, but not limited
to, Ferris Wheels, Swings, Tilt-a-Whirls, and Carousels,
that are erected for each special event, street fair or
block party must be licensed by the DCA and pass inspection
by the DOB's Elevator Division each time they relocate.
The Mayor's Community Assistance Unit issues permits for
street fair and block parties, and this year expects to
issue over 4,400 to sponsoring organizations across the
So far this season, the DCA has processed
56 applications for temporary rides at street fairs or block
parties. DOB inspectors will perform more than 2,000 total
inspections during the amusement park/carnival season, including
unannounced spot checks. Operators who violate the law will
face maximum penalties of $100 per day of unlicensed activity,
and rides without a license must be taken down immediately.
License applications are available on the DCA web site at
Thank heavens for summer in the City
with street fairs and block parties, but the amusement rides
set up for these special events need to be safe, said
DCA Commissioner Gretchen Dykstra. At DCA we make
it easy for operators and safe for consumers. Our inspectors
are making unannounced visits checking fair ride licenses
and insurance, and will continue to do so throughout the
New York City's amusement parks, fairs
and carnivals are great summer events. The Department of
Buildings and the Department of Consumer Affairs work closely
together to make sure that these are places where families
can enjoy themselves. said Patricia J. Lancaster,
FAIA, Commissioner of the Buildings Department. She added,
Following our amusement ride safety tips will help
make sure that your visit to the park, fair or carnival
is both safe and fun.
Operators of popular inflatable bouncers and
slides, like the Moonwalk or Super Slide, must also be licensed
and comply with standard manufacturer's safety requirements,
as well as properly secure each ride.
The R.O.A.R organization (Responsible
Operators of Amusement Rentals) is happy to work with the
Department of Consumer Affairs, said Scott Weisberg
of R.O.A.R., and owner of Scott's Magic and Entertainment
Company. We have the same common goal of making the
industry safer; and licensing helps ensures that.
While the Mayor's Community Assistance Unit welcomes
the fun and excitement associated with block parties and
street fairs, we also want to ensure that precautions are
taken to keep every event we permit as safe and enjoyable
as possible, said Jonathan Greenspun, Commissioner
of the Community Assistance Unit. Parents and children
have a right to expect that amusement rides are safe and
reliable and we applaud the Department of Consumer Affairs
and the Department of Buildings for putting safety first.
All operators for portable amusement rides
are required to have a one-year license from the DCA and
carry appropriate ride and worker's compensation insurance.
Truck-mounted rides must pass inspection by the DOB's Elevator
Division. CAU and the DCA mailed out letters detailing the
rules for portable rides to all community boards, local
precincts, City Council members, as well as the individual
For more information, amusement ride operators
and street fair/block party organizers are encouraged to
call 3-1-1 within New York City, 212-NEW-YORK outside, or
go to www.nyc.gov.
Safety Tips from the NYC Department of Buildings
AMUSEMENT RIDE SAFETY TIPS
Each year, specially trained inspectors from
the NYC Department of Buildings check the condition and
operation of each amusement ride in New York City. With
the help of this inspection team, we have compiled a list
of amusement ride safety tips.
Before getting on any ride, always
take a moment to look it over. If something does not
appear normal or if the ride looks unsafe in any way,
DO NOT GET ON IT. Immediately notify the operator
of the ride, or if necessary, the police.
Take notice of the condition of the
ride operator. If the operator seems unknowledgeable
or under the influence of drugs or alcohol, immediately
alert the manager of the amusement park or carnival, or
if necessary, the police. DO NOT GET ON THE RIDE.
Before getting on a ride, carefully
read the height, weight and medical restrictions.
Anyone who does not meet the required specifications is
not allowed on the ride. Read any instructions on what
to do while the ride is in motion and follow the directions
given by the operator.
After being fastened into the ride,
check the restraints (seat belts, shoulder harnesses,
etc.) by pushing and pulling on them to make sure they
are adequately secured. If you are accompanying a
child, check the condition of his/her restraints as well.
If any defects are noticed or the restraints do not seem
properly secured, notify the operator before the ride
An adult should always accompany young
children. Never attempt to force a frightened child
onto a ride. When watching a child on a ride, never attempt
to lean over the railing or fence to touch him/her.
Keep your head, hands, arms, legs and
feet inside the ride at all times.
Watch your step when entering or exiting
a ride. Always walk slowly and be aware of any uneven
ground or wire crossings when you step off the device.
Some rides can make you dizzy.
Hold onto the handrails, especially when exiting.
Rowdiness and excessive play are STRICTLY
PROHIBITED on all rides.
NEVER stand up or exit a ride while
it is in motion. Remain fastened in your seat until
the ride comes to a complete stop.
NEVER get on a ride while under the
influence of drugs or alcohol.
IN CASE OF AN EMERGENCY, follow
the instructions of the ride operator and emergency personnel.