Girl falls to death from New Jersey Ferris wheel

Reuters News
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Posted: Jun 03, 2011 6:38 PM
Girl falls to death from New Jersey Ferris wheel

PHILADELPHIA (Reuters) - An 11-year-old girl on a school trip to the popular shore resort at Wildwood, New Jersey plunged to her death on Friday as she was riding on an amusement park Ferris wheel.

Police identified her as Abdiah Jones, a student at the Pleasant Tech Academy, in Pleasantville, New Jersey.

Tim Samson, the brand manager for Morey's Mariner Landing Pier, said the Ferris wheel is 156 feet high. He did not know where Jones was on the wheel when she fell.

He said the park was packed with visiting school children, and many would have been in place to see what happened.

Amusement park officials closed the facility for Friday, while officials from the New Jersey carnival amusement department inspected the wheel, built in 1985.

Samson told Reuters one of the attractions of the wheel is that riders get a good view of the adjacent beach and the ocean as they go around and around.

Police said they first received a call about the accident about 12:30 p.m., and that Jones was pronounced dead at about 1:15 p.m.

Samson said the park, with the exception of the Ferris wheel, is expected to re-open on Saturday.

(Reporting by Dave Warner; Editing by Jerry Norton)