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Emergency Crews Keep Fair Safe

Thousands of people come to the Eastern Idaho State Fair for some fun and a bite of fair food, but anywhere with a lot of people there’s the risk of someone getting hurt.

Lyle Barney has led the medical team at the fair for close to 20 years, and he has seen a lot.

“I’ve seen a baby born, I’ve seen full arrests, I’ve seen arterial bleeds, and I’ve seen bones sticking out of people’s boots. I’ve seen quite a few things over the years,? Barney said.

More than 30 men and women with EMT training staff the 5 first aid stations around the fair.

And dozens of police officers roam the grounds acting as security.

“We’re watching out for the interests of the people at the fair. when they come to the fair we want to make sure they have a fun and safe time,? Fair Security Supervisor Lt. Ron Ball.

Over the last few years the fair has tried to prepare for the worst possible safety hazards.

Staff have made sure booths can withstand heavy winds, secured stages and grandstands, even planned what to do in case of a tornado.

“I feel that over the last year or two things have really improved as far as what he have to do with safety,? Barney said.

But mostly first aid at the fair deals with the small emergencies, like overdoing it with the fair food.

“The people that come to the fair need to be prepared. They need to wear the right clothing, the right shoes. They need to be hydrated and not eat too much fair food. I know that’s what everybody comes to the fair for, but those seem to be our major things,? Barney said.

Barney said so far the fair hasn’t had many emergencies compared to past years, and he hopes emergency responders will have lots of downtime until the fair ends.

“It’s actually been a really good fair. They say they want us to work, but if we’re not working everybody is safe, so we look forward to not working,? Barney said.

Emergency staff members said the most common problem at the fair is heat exhaustion, and they invite anyone feeling dehydrated to get some water at one of the first aid stations.

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