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Mall of America closes ride after Ohio State Fair accident involving similar attraction

BLOOMINGTON, Minn. — The Mall of America has closed down one of its amusement rides in the wake of a fatal accident involving a similar ride in Ohio this week.

Mall officials said Thursday afternoon, July 27, that the Shredder's Mutant Masher ride at Nickelodeon Universe was closed as a precaution pending further inspection.

The decision came after one person was killed and seven were injured when the Fire Ball ride broke apart Wednesday at the Ohio State Fair.

The Mall of America said in a statement that its rides are inspected daily.

"Mall of America holds itself to the highest standards," the statement read. "Our ride will remain inactive until we've been given appropriate clearance by our manufacturer."

The Dutch company KMG, which manufactured the Ohio Fire Ball ride, instructed all 43 versions of the ride around the world to be shut down Thursday. The company said there are 11 such rides in the United States.

The Mall of America's Mutant Masher was manufactured by the Kansas-based Chance Rides.

The company obtained a license from KMG years ago to build a similar ride, according to Jeff Roth, vice president of administration for Chance.

But Roth stressed that the Mall of America's ride had little chance of malfunctioning as the Ohio ride did, because the chairs connect to the ride's metal arms more securely than in KMG's original design.

"The potential for failure on the Mall of America ride is nonexistent because of its dissimilarity from the Fire Ball ride in Ohio," Roth said. He called the designs "entirely different."

The Mutant Mashers attraction came to the mall in 2015, replacing the Danny Phantom Ghost Zone. It is one of nine of attractions billed as "thrill" rides. The mall has 27 total rides.

It "functions as a giant pendulum, spinning and swinging riders more than 60 feet in the air," according to the mall. It is associated with the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles franchise.

A version of the ride has never appeared at the Minnesota State Fair, which is scheduled for later this summer.

"The ride involved in the incident at the Ohio State Fair was not scheduled to be a part of the 2017 Minnesota State Fair, nor has it been a part of the Mighty Midway in the past," the Fair said in a statement Thursday.

Rides are inspected prior to opening of the Minnesota State Fair and daily during the event.

"Safety is our number one priority," the statement said.

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