Two carnival workers received severe electric shocks Tuesday afternoon when one of the rides they were helping to set up for the 55th annual Conejo Valley Days hit an overhead power line at Conejo Creek Park South.
Melesio Garcia-Jacinto, 26, of Pomona was in fair condition Wednesday morning at Los Robles Hospital and Medical Center in Thousand Oaks, hospital spokesperson Kris Carraway-Bowman said.
Esdras Jose Miranda Chavarria, 19, of Ontario was treated at the hospital for minor burns and released Tuesday, Carraway-Bowman said.
Both men are employees of Fontana-based Shamrock Shows.
Cal OSHA is investigating the incident. Krisann Chasarik, Cal OSHA spokesperson, said her agency shows no previous employee accidents reported for Shamrock Shows, which also goes by North American Amusement.
However, Chasarik did say that North American Amusement was cited by Cal OSHA last June for operating one of their rides, Sky Wheel, without a permit from the agency.
A permit means Cal OSHA has determined that the ride is functioning properly.
Also, while at Conejo Valley Days in May 2004, the company’s Super Loop ride, also known as Chicago Loop, malfunctioned by stopping abruptly, sending seven people to the hospital with cuts and bruises, Chasarik said, adding that Super Loop is the same ride that touched the power line Tuesday.
Tuesday’s incident at Conejo Creek Park South occurred around 12:15 p.m., when Garcia Jacinto was apparently holding a metal cable attached to one of the rides being erected by other workers, said Capt. Ron Oatman of the Ventura County Fire Department.
The ride touched an overhead power line and Garcia-Jacinto received an intense shock, Oatman said.
Garcia- Jacinto was conscious but appeared to be in severe distress, with visible burns on his body, when emergency medical personnel arrived, Oatman said.
“There was actual charring on the ground where the metal cable was laying,” Oatman said.
Meanwhile, Miranda Chavarria approached medical personnel, saying he was working near Garcia- Jacinto and had been shocked by electricity too, Oatman said.
Both men were treated at the scene and taken by ambulance to Los Robles Hospital.
The downed power line caused 2,514 customers to lose power, said Rudy Gonzales, Southern California Edison spokesperson.
The affected area was south of Rutland Place, west of Westlake Boulevard, north of Hauser Circle and east of Valley High Street.
Power was restored about 15 minutes later to all but 775 customers.
Their electricity was back on by 1: 30 p. m. Power was restored to the park about 3:30 a.m. Wednesday, Gonzales said.
Frank Akrey, president of Conejo Valley Days, said the incident is unfortunate, but the 55-year-old tradition of celebrating the heritage of Thousand Oaks will go on as scheduled.
“It’s not going to slow down our opening,” Akrey said, adding the organizers are thankful that the injured men are okay.
Akrey commended the quick response from fire, police and Edison.
“I think it was handled really well,” he said. “Accidents happen.”
Joe Blash, one of four names listed as contacts on the Shamrock Shows’s website, hung up the phone when contacted by the Acorn and asked if his company has had any other on-the-job accidents.
By Michelle Knight
Discussions about Parks and Fairs in America
2 posts • Page 1 of 1
Yes I think I know this particular Super Loop which is one of the oldest currently operating in America. It does many county fairs and events throughout Southern and Northern California. Good to hear the carnival workers will be okay. A lot of electricity goes through those ride cables that's for sure!
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