A 25-year-old woman who fell from a carnival ride in Far North Queensland late yesterday is in a critical but stable condition in hospital.
The incident happened at about 5.30pm at the Cairns showgrounds at Parramatta Park.
The woman fell from a ride called The Hangover – a two-armed ride that swings people through the air.
Queensland Fire and Emergency Services and paramedics treated the woman at the scene before she was taken to the Cairns Base Hospital.
Cairns Show Association president Ian Allen said the event was run by an independent third party.
“The event there was not run by the Cairns Show Association,” he said.
“It was hired by an independent group called Showfest. We leased the ground out to them.”
The ABC has contacted the Showfest organiser for comment.
‘She just dropped head-first’
Darnell Addo said he saw the “terrible” moment the woman fell from the ride.
“She was at the very top … and she just dropped head-first,” he said.
“It was just a big bang … I was just in shock.”
Addo said he heard an operator of the ride tell panicked onlookers: “the machine is on a timer, I can’t stop it”.
Addo had just purchased a ticket for the ride and was waiting in line when the accident happened.
“It could have been me,” he said.
“I’m probably never going to go on a ride in my life again after that.”
Allen said as president he could close the event down, but was instructed by police that would not be necessary at this stage.
“But the [Hangover] ride cannot operate, nor the ride next door, until they do their investigation,” Allen said.
His thoughts were with the woman and her family, he said.
“Just to have anyone having an accident at any event, not whether it’s the Cairns Show or anything but you just don’t want to have anything like that,” he said.
“I’d just like to send out my sympathy to the family there… that this tragic accident has happened.”
Queensland police and Workplace Health and Safety are investigating.