Update: Storm Tips Over Ride at Taste of Omaha


At least two children were treated for minor injuries after a ride they were in was tipped over in the storm.

The ride was part of the festivities at Taste of Omaha, in the Heartland of America Park and Lewis and Clark Landing. The storm hit around 5:30 p.m. Sunday. Those who sustained minor injuries were treated at the scene.

Several tents were also damaged by the strong winds.

The festival had been scheduled to go until eight o'clock; however, it never resumed.

While crews cleaned up the mess Monday, some wondered if better precautions could have been taken.

"We just saw it get all dark, and it dropped like 15 degrees, and the wind started picking up. We saw it start tipping," says Kevin Lussier, who says he was there when a carnival attraction blew over Sunday night.

Before Lussier and his family knew it, the attraction called, "The Playstation," blew over onto a truck.

Lussier says at least three kids were stuck inside.

He tells Channel 6 that he and some others climbed in to get them out.

"We climbed in, got through the net, got one of the kids out, and then another kid, he was stuck in the bars, like both of his legs were in the bars, so we had to rip off a net to like pick him out of it," Lussier says.

When the storm came in, strong wind blew over many of the booths, and furniture.

That meant Monday, crews were left with a big mess to clean up.

Earl Poole, who works maintenance at the riverfront, still can't shake seeing things fly at him Sunday night. "The wind just took'em and just went over the boardwalk, and I just took off running trying to find someplace to hide," he says.

The winds were out of control, but Lussier says there should have been much better precautions in place.

"I just think it's pretty wild that wasn't strapped down. I mean, yeah it was some tough wind, but this is a carnival ride. It should be able to like, take more than that," says Lussier.

The head of the carnival declined to comment on camera. However, he said the incident was an act of God. He says he's never needed to strap down the attraction as long as he's had it. He adds his own grandchildren were inside the truck the ride fell on, but they're all ok.

Carnival rides in Nebraska are inspected by a state inspector. That office handles elevators and carnival rides.

The Santa Lucia Festival will be here in just a few days. In light of the Taste of Omaha storm events events, the Santa Lucia Festival Committee is appointing someone to watch over the weather, and evacuate the area if any severe storms come in.


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