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Tue Feb 20, 2018, 04:34 AM

Victims attorneys say state shares blame for Fire Ball tragedy, but law shields it from liability

Attorneys for five victims of the July 26 Fire Ball ride disaster at the Ohio State Fair say they strongly believe the state and its ride inspectors share blame for the tragedy, but agree that the law protects the state from monetary damages.

A proposed settlement was announced Thursday between the Ohio Expositions Commission and attorneys representing Tyler Jarrell, 18, who was killed, and four others injured in the collapse of one of the Fire Ball’s rusted gondola arms. The commission said neither it nor the state will pay any money to the five victims and state government has been removed from any potential lawsuit.

Columbus attorney Mark Kitrick, who represents Jarrell’s estate along with Mark Lewis, said they and attorneys representing four other victims were upset by the state’s characterization of the announcement, which made it sound like the victims did not blame the state for the tragedy.

“This is false. The victims have always maintained that the state inspectors, among others, are to blame for allowing the heavily corroded, unsafe Fire Ball ride to operate,” according to a joint statement from the attorneys issued Monday.

Read more: http://www.dispatch.com/news/20180219/victims-attorneys-say-state-shares-blame-for-fire-ball-tragedy-but-law-shields-it-from-liability

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