Inspectors say cell phones pose safety concern on rides
"It's number one."
Jesse Bogue is talking about ride safety.
He's the assistant manager of Butler Amusements, the company that provides the rides for the Central Washington State Fair.
He says rides are ritually inspected to make sure they run smoothly and nobody gets hurt.
"Everybody that works on a ride does their daily inspections, an hour prior to opening. Everybody comes through, we have a couple-page checklist, each ride is a little bit different," said Bogue.
When inspecting, he says ride operators and maintenance crews are checking seat belts, and making sure there aren't any loose parts or bolts or missing pieces.
And they're examining the wheels and brakes of the rides. But, Bogue says ride safety doesn't just end with them. It has much to do with the people who are riding.
"One of the biggest things that people have to respect is the cell phones. Rides are now going upside down, they're spinning around," he said.
Bogue says cell phones are at-risk of falling out of people's hands or pockets when they're on rides, which could seriously injure someone if dropped from someplace high.
So, some of the rides have bins where you can keep them for the duration of the ride.
Eight-year-old Jaela Dominguez says her favorite ride is the Wacky Worm.
"It keeps going and then it goes really fast, and I like how it feels when the wind blows me," she said.
And while she doesn't have a cell phone to worry about, she says she makes it a point to be a responsible rider, so she doesn't horseplay on the rides, which Bogue says is another element to ride safety.
She says she feels safe riding the Wacky Worm over and over again..
"It's because they like have the bars, and they will protect you from falling off," said Dominguez.