Abbey Park ride operator fined after accident

Billy Bates ride collapseA funfair ride operator has been fined following a ride collapse which seriously injured two boys in 2012.

The Mega Bounce (or frog hopper) ride’s operator William Roberts pleaded guilty to failing to ensure the ride’s safe operation.

The injured boys – Conor Baker and Danny Keogh – were thrown from the ride at Billy Bates & Sons Funfair in Abbey Park, Leicester on 28 July 2012.

According to the BBC, the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) said “obvious” defects in the ride were “troubling”.

Inspector Neil Ward said: “The outcome could have been much worse. It was a horrifying and painful experience for Conor and Danny and extremely distressing for their families, friends and members of the public who witnessed the incident.”

36-year-old ride operator Roberts was fined £6,500 and ordered to pay costs of £5,000, after admitting breaching Provision and Use of Work Equipment Regulations.

The HSE investigation identified that a clip and pin securing the ride car to its operating arm had fallen out and that the 14-car ride had been poorly maintained.

The boys, then both aged 16, suffered considerable injuries.

Danny was treated in intensive care following surgery for a collapsed lung, broken arm and deep wounds to his side, requiring 88 staples. He also required stitches in his tongue and chin.

Conor endured a broken nose and teeth, with cuts to his face a significant blow to the head.