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NC fines state fair ride operators over injuries

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VortexWTVD.jpg

MICHAEL BIESECKER
Associated Press

RALEIGH, NC (AP) -- North Carolina regulators have fined thrill ride operators more than $114,000 following a mishap at the 2013 State Fair that left five people injured, three of them critically.

The state Department of Labor announced the civil fines Wednesday following a lengthy investigation into the Oct. 24 accident with the Vortex ride.

Family Attractions Amusement of Valdosta, GA, and ride owner Joshua Macaroni were fined more than $56,000. Ride operators Tim Tutterrow and Omar Toranzo were each fined $350.

Macaroni and Tutterrow already face felony charges over what prosecutors say was tampering with a safety switch that was supposed to keep the ride from moving unless patrons were properly secured.

Four patrons and a ride worker were injured when the Vortex suddenly lurched into motion, flinging them through the air.

(Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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