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Dead Teen-Ager’s Family Sues Carnival, Ride Owner

December 9, 1988

FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. (AP) _ The family of a teen-ager killed when a whirling carnival ride collapsed has filed a $10 million lawsuit against the ride’s owner and the Broward County Fair.

Christie Schafale, 17, of Cooper City was killed and six people were injured when an arm of The Monster ride collapsed Nov. 23. An initial investigation found that a crack in the arm had been painted over.

″The family has just suffered profoundly,″ Shafale’s attorney, Murray Sams Jr., said Thursday.

The Broward Circuit Court lawsuit accuses the fair and the ride’s owner, the James E. Strates Shows of Orlando, of careless and reckless disregard for the riders’ safety by failing to properly inspect the ride, repair the crack and warn the public of the allegedly hazardous conditions.

Strates lawyer Peter Wechsler said he had not seen the lawsuit and could not comment.

The fair’s attorney, Steven Reininger, said the fair probably will argue that Strates was an independent contractor charged with the responsibility to maintain safe rides.

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