Camel ride attraction at Coastal Carolina Fair shut down after incident

CHARLESTON, SC (WCSC) - The camel ride attraction at the Coastal Carolina Fair was shut down after an incident was caught on camera Thursday night.

Jackie Brumley was on one of the camels’ backs when the handler fell to the ground and the camel moved towards him.

The incident was caught on video.

“I told her that we are going to get t shirts that say, ‘I survived the camel ride at the fair,’” Brumley said she can laugh now about her experience with the camel ride attraction, but in the moment, all she felt was fear.

“I’m sitting there thinking, you see on tv all the time the elephants that run off from the circus and things, and now I’m living it,” Brumey said. “This is how this happens.”

Brumley said what really shook her most about the experience was thinking of the other possibilities about what could have happened.

“What if it had been my granddaughter up there, another child up there,” Brumley said. “I don’t think we take the animal rides as seriously as we should.”

Fair officials say, out of an abundance of caution, they shut down the camel ride attraction Friday morning, and the owner of the attraction packed up everything, including the camels.

“I was so relieved to see that the patrons that were having a fun ride, stayed on the camel, and that the ride operator was not injured,” Coastal Carolina Fair President Harry Robbins said. “But it’s certainly alarming when you see something like that, and we just want to make sure that doesn’t happen again.”

Live 5 News also spoke with the owner of the All American Camel Rides attraction over the phone.

Charles Beam II said this has never happened before, and he agreed with fair officials that it would be best to shut down the attraction for the rest of the fair.

The ride cost just five dollars, but it’s one Brumley said she will remember for a lifetime.

“When they came over once we were all secure, the guy ran over and said…but did you have fun because that’s the most important thing…that you had fun,” Brumley said. “I was thinking, that’s really not the most important thing here.”

Fair officials said it’s still too early to say if the camel rides will be back for next year’s fair.

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