In 1998, 15-year old Leslie Lane went to the Travis County Fair to ride the midway. Tragically, the safety mechanism on the her ride failed, catapulting Leslie, along with her brother and best friend, out of the carnival ride. The three children struck a retaining wall. While the other children were not seriously injured, Leslie died as a result of a massive head trauma.
The following year, lawmakers enacted daily safety inspection requirements for the safety harnesses on mobile amusement rides like the one Leslie was on. And, they gave law enforcement the authority to shut down unsafe mobile amusement rides.
But the law has loopholes big enough to drive a roller coaster through. (more…)