Woman dies after 36-foot fall from San Bernardino County Fair attraction.
A Navy veteran died Friday after jumping nearly 30 feet off a platform on onto a giant airbag, part of an attraction at the San Bernardino County Fair, coroner’s officials said.
Sabrina Gordon, 31, and a resident of Hesperia, was on the middle platform of the FreeDrop USA ride at the fair when she fell to the ground. She was airlifted to a county hospital and died from her injuries around 12:20 a.m., according to the San Bernardino County Sheriff-Coroner Department.
The FreeDrop USA attraction is new this year at the fair and in California, according to authorities.
Details about Gordon’s fall were not released by sheriff’s investigators or fair officials.
“Safety is our top priority; the ride will be closed pending a thorough investigation by the San Bernardino County Sheriff’s Department,” said San Bernardino County Fair CEO/ General Manager Geoff Hinds.
However, a handful of witnesses say Gordon may have hesitated when jumping off the non-mechanical attraction, where participants jump from the top of a scaffolding-type structure onto a large air-filled pillow.
On Friday evening, the pillow was deflated and many people stopped by to size up the attraction. Security was around it, and people could not get close.
A couple of people noted the lack of safety devices.
“Even if you hit the bag you could kill herself,” said Mike McCreadie, 62, of Apple Valley. “And I consider myself pretty brave and I wouldn’t do this, not even in my younger years.”
Nikki Harmon called the death a terrible tragedy but she said the fair shouldn’t be liable.
“Just like walking on the street and getting hit by a car, I don’t think you should be able to sue for this,” she said.
On Friday night, a rose was placed in the fence surrounding the attraction by a visitor.
Cal OSHA officials said they are not involved because this kind of attraction is not under their jurisdiction.
According to a statement from ride owner Aspen Decker, “people have made more than 50,000 successful jumps across multiple states during a recent 36 city tour. We are proud of our safety record and conduct thorough safety training with each of our employees as well as every participant.”
Lyle Bell, who on Facebook identified himself as Gordon’s father, shared photos of his daughter on his profile page and many friends expressing their condolences about the news.
According to Gordon’s Instagram page, she was a Navy Petty Officer 1st Class veteran and had recently been EMT-certified. A self-proclaimed boxer lover, her Instagram is filled with pictures of her dog and motivational posts referring to Crossfit Secession in Victorville.