New Safety Protocols For New York State’s Fair

2019 file photo by Michael J. Okoniewski / NYS Fair.

SYRACUSE – The New York State Fair begins this week, with hundreds of thousands of people are expected to go, but many are wondering what is being done to make the rides safer from COVID-19.

The Director of the State Fair says the company that owns and operates the rides has put together new safety and health protocols.

“They (the rides) will get sanitized on a regular basis if not between uses,” explained Troy Waffner, New York State Fair Director. “You can come and feel safe on the midway. The carnival takes this seriously, we take this seriously.”

Cleaning rides using a special sanitizing solution which wade says works up to 28 days, frequent cleaning of rides between uses, offering touchless hand sanitizers around the midway, and spacing out rides, people on them and in lines.

Tickets and ride passes can be purchased through a cell phone app, or kiosk to limit face to face interactions.

Game equipment will also be wiped down after use, and prizes will be cleaned and quarantined before getting a new home.

Employees will have temperatures checked before each shift, and will be required to wear a mask or face covering at all times.

“I don’t think rides in my mind are any bigger of a concern than anything else we do on the fairgrounds number one and sure you can point to fairs and probably music festivals and amphitheaters where people congregate and there’s probably covid positive tests that come out of that but it’s true of everywhere else in life you just don’t hear of it,” said Waffner. “You go to Wegmans you stand a similar chance of getting covid than you do anywhere.”

A month ago, the same company operated rides at the Delaware State Fair. The COVID positivity rate statewide was already rising before the state fair, and it jumped from one percent during the week of the fair.


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