Comptroller Tom DiNapoli's office says an audit of amusement ride inspections by the state Department of Labor finds they are generally thorough, but more needs to be done to insure safety at small festivals and fairs.
The comptroller's office says the Labor Department has conducted 4,800 site visits to inspect rides from 2011 to 2013, and issued 5,000 permits in that period of time. The audit found they were adequately inspecting large amusement parks, many county and regional fairs, as well as the New York State Fair. But they determined that there wasn't enough independent information to make the same conclusion for the many temporary rides set up by transient operators at local fairs and traveling carnivals. They consider those rides to be a higher risk, which makes inspection of them a priority each time they are set up.
DiNapoli's office says they will be sending auditors to these small fairs and festivals to ensure their rides are safe and have the necessary permits. They say there have been no safety problems discovered so far, but that this is an issue where there can't be any tolerance for error.