CHELSEA, Mich. - Police say two children were critically injured after falling from a Ferris wheel cab at the Chelsea Community Fair.
Witnesses say two children -- a 16-year-old girl and her 8-year-old brother -- fell from a height of 15-20 feet Thursday night.
They were taken to C.S. Mott Children's Hospital and were initially in critical condition. The boy suffered a broken nose and broken jaw. He was released and is back home.
The teen was knocked unconscious by the fall. She is awake and in stable condition.
Chelsea resident Alex Keszler said she was standing by the Ferris wheel around 8:20 p.m. when she saw that one of the cabs got caught on another one, causing the cab the children were riding in to tip forward as the Ferris wheel rotated.
Keszler says the opening of the cab "just dumped the kids out."
The ride company, North American Midway Entertainment, released this incident statement on Friday:
North American Midway Entertainment, LLC is reporting a ride incident that occurred at the Chelsea Community Fair in Chelsea, Michigan on Thursday, August 21, 2014 at approximately 8:30pm. The ride incident occurred on the Century Wheel, commonly known as a Ferris Wheel with gondola-style round seating, and was under regular operation at the time of the incident. The cause of incident is still unclear and under investigation. The guests were transported to an area hospital.
The incident was not a mechanical malfunction and no structural damage has been found by the Michigan state ride inspector who has deemed it safe to ride and operate. The Century Wheel will reopen on Friday, August 22 at the opening of the Fair.
This Century Wheel was manufactured in 1996 by Chance Manufacturer and has not had any previous incidents of this kind.
Safety is our number one concern at North American Midway Entertainment. We will continue to work with safety experts to will report any additional information if and when it becomes available.
Our heartfelt sympathy goes out to the injured individuals and their families and we pray for their quick recovery.
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