Following Saturday's hayride accident at Harvest Hill Farms in Mechanic Falls, Maine, that killed a 17-year-old high school student, some are taking a closer look at what kind of guidelines exist for these kinds of popular Fall attractions.
There are no federal regulations in place for operating hayrides. The state fire marshals office inspects and licenses mechanical amusement rides in Maine, but hayrides do not require such licensing.
Amusement accident lawyer based out of Philadelphia, PA, Jeffrey Reiff, said The Consumer Product Safety Commission estimates that the number of injuries on hayrides has risen dramatically, yet the regulation and inspection of hayrides is often left to the state or local municipalities
"The injuries that occur with hayride accidents are usually quite significant because of the number of people involved and the size and weight of the equipment," Reiff told NEWS CENTER. "The Consumer Product Safety Commission estimates that the number of injuries on hayrides has risen dramatically, yet the regulation, inspection of hayrides is often left up to state or local municipalities, and as a result, regulation varies from none to semi-good."
Farmers aren't required to file accident reports on private property so it's impossible for the CPSC to know how many injuries are caused by hayrides each year, according to Reiff.