One Year After Ohio State Fair Death Ride Safety 'Tyler’s Law' Has Yet to Pass

Jul 24, 2018

A year ago this week, an 18-year-old Columbus man was killed on a thrill ride on the first day of the Ohio State Fair. Legislation has been proposed to strengthen ride safety, but the law named for Tyler Jarrell hasn’t passed yet.

Tyler’s Law was introduced in May, nine months after Jarrell was thrown from the Fireball thrill ride, which broke apart because of extensive corrosion. 

Democratic Rep. John Patterson said the law, if passed, would require more skilled inspectors and more detailed records of rides, including before and after photos.

He said there are more events featuring rides, so they’re constantly being moved and reassembled. And they’re getting bigger and more thrilling.

“There’s more stress points on the mechanical and engineering side of these rides, which needs to be more specialized training to be on alert for those,” Patterson said.

It took time to do the right research to create the legislation, he said. Now he and Republican Rep. Jim Hughes, who is co-sponsoring the bill, are hoping it will pass by the end of the year.