WINSTON-SALEM, NC -- The Dixie Classic Fair in Winston-Salem opens in less than 10 days and the set up is already underway.
On Tuesday, crews were busy working to assemble the roller coaster and other rides.
Fair Director David Sparks says they’re expecting big crowds during the first week.
"Every year, you always look forward to it,” said Sparks. “The build up of moving is always very exciting."
But with that excitement also comes some fear after two incidents this year involving fair rides.
Sparks says crews are taking extra precautions after a worker fell while trying to save a group of children from a malfunctioning Ferris wheel at the Central Carolina Fair in Greensboro last Friday.
"Something like that is just so unexpected," said Sparks.
Sparks says the NC Department of Labor is inspecting rides more thoroughly than ever this year -- making sure they're all 100% in compliance with safety standards.
"They are not only coming in and doing their normal inspection here but they are doing nondestructive testing on all the rides that have tubular steel to make sure they know what is going on inside the metal,” said Sparks. “It's just an extra step to make sure that the rides are safe."
The fair is also adding more signage to remind people to be safe and use common sense on rides.
“Most of the people who are injured in a ride, it's not necessarily because of a ride failing but it's because of something that the person did like standing up in a ride where you're supposed to be sitting down,” said Sparks.
One ride has been taken out altogether, the “Fireball,” which is the same ride that broke down in Ohio earlier this year, killing one and injuring several others.
"People who come to the fair and ride a ride should know that they have been inspected from top to bottom and they are not going to put something that is unsafe or questionable out here," said Sparks.
Sparks doesn’t expect anything to go wrong but he says the fair wants to take every possible precaution they can to make sure.
“We want to make sure that people come to the fair and enjoy the rides and enjoy their experience here,” said Sparks.
The NC Department of Labor has already done one round of inspections on the rides that are already at the fairgrounds.
They'll come back for another round of inspections when the rest of the rides arrive later this week.
The Dixie Classic Fair opens next Friday, September 29 and runs through October 8.
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