3 fall from Ferris wheel at Port Townsend’s Rhody Festival

by: KIRO 7 News Staff

PORT TOWNSEND, Wash. – Washington state pulled the operating permit for the Ferris wheel that dumped three people 30 feet to the ground in Port Townsend. 

On KIRO 7 News at 5 p.m., we’re hearing the latest from state inspectors and the company that maintains the rides. Watch on-air or here.

Here’s what we know now. 

Who was injured?

A 47-year-old mother, her 59-year-old partner, and their 7-year-old son were on the Phoenix Ferris Wheel on Thursday night at the Rhododendron Festival.

See photos of the scene here.

The 47-year-old and child were sent to a nearby hospital. The 59-year-old woman was airlifted to Harborview Medical Center in critical condition with a head injury and multiple fractures. As of Friday morning, she was in serious but stable condition in intensive care.

What happened?

Police were told the ride made a grinding sound and something appeared to fall out. The cart slowly tipped over and dumped the passengers.

They tried to hold on, but fell violently, hitting the wheel near the 20-feet mark.

People on the scene said it appeared a pin or section came off the wheel, but it’s unclear what exactly fell out from the ride.   

KIRO 7 News talked to Washington State Ride Inspector Richard Stromberg.

>> Related: How do you know a fair ride is safe?

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