1 killed, 7 injured in ride malfunction at Ohio State Fair

Authorities stand near the Fire Ball amusement ride after the ride malfunctioned injuring several at the Ohio State Fair, Wednesday, July 26, 2017, in Columbus, Ohio. Some of the victims were thrown from the ride when it malfunctioned Wednesday night, said Columbus Fire Battalion Chief Steve Martin. (Jim Woods/The Columbus Dispatch via AP)

COLUMBUS, Ohio (WSYX/WTTE) - One person was killed and seven were injured as the result of a ride malfunction at the Ohio State Fair Wednesday, according to the Columbus Division of Fire.

The victims range in age between 13 and 41 years old. The fire department confirmed that an 18-year-old was killed.

It happened when the Fire Ball ride malfunctioned as people were riding it. One of the seats reportedly flew off. Authorities say that particular ride had been inspected multiple times, including by a third-party inspector.

A Snapchat video posted to Facebook appeared to show the moment it happened.

Gov. John Kasich released a statement on the incident Wednesday night:

"I am terribly saddened by this accident, by the loss of life and that people were injured enjoying Ohio's fair. Our thoughts and prayers go out to those grieving and injured. I have ordered a full investigation into this incident and have ordered that all fair rides be shut down until additional safety inspections can be completed."

Sen. Rob Portman, R-Ohio, also expressed his condolences:

"Jane and I send our prayers and deepest sympathies to all those who were impacted by the accident at the Ohio State Fair this evening."

Wednesday marked the first day of the fair, scheduled to run through Sunday, Aug. 6.

Three of the people injured went to Grant Medical Center, two are in fair condition, and one is in critical. Some of the people injured went to the OSU Wexner Medical Center, which released the following statement:

"An incident has occurred at the Ohio State Fair. We are working diligently with our staff, local law enforcement and emergency services to respond to the situation. We have received 3 patients at our hospital. Medical teams are assessing and treating their injuries.
"We value the support of the community as we attend to those who need immediate assistance. We will provide further updates as information becomes available."

Inspections continued through the night into Thursday morning. Fair officials said while the fair opened as planned at 9 a.m., rides weren't open until more inspections were completed.

Hospital officials said two people were released from Grant Medical Center. Five others remained hospitalized at Grant, Wexner Medical Center, and Nationwide Children's Hospital.

This story is developing and will be updated as more information becomes available.

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