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The Canadian National Exhibition Returns for the First Time Since the Start of the COVID-19 Pandemic, but Safety Concerns Loom
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The Canadian National Exhibition Returns for the First Time Since the Start of the COVID-19 Pandemic, but Safety Concerns Loom

For the first time since the COVID-19 pandemic shut down the Canadian National Exhibition in 2020, the fair reopens this year, but some are concerned that its safety may be compromised.

A dispute between the Ontario Public Service Employees Union (OPSEU) and the Technical Standards and Safety Authority (TSSA) led 170 safety inspectors to go on strike late last month.

The last time the CNE was cancelled was during World War II, so the fair grounds could be used as an army base.

The strike has forced attractions like Canada’s Wonderland and the CNE to hire outside inspectors to ensure their rides and equipment comply with safety standards.

Prior to opening to the public and throughout the 18-day fair, regulatory authorities inspect all rides and food vendors at the CNE. By doing so, guests are only at risk from the latest deep-fried food trend rather than the attractions themselves.

In a statement to CP24, CNE CEO Darrell Brown asserts that the annual fair has the “highest safety standards in the industry” and that public safety is “top priority.”

According to the TSSA, any “amusement device” (not like that!) bearing a valid TSSA authorization has been regularly inspected and is safe to ride. The governing body said it would also continue to respond to serious safety incidents.

So rest assured, the rollercoaster operated by the part-time high school student earning minimum wage is completely safe to ride. No, but seriously, you should be fine.

The CNE starts this Friday and runs until Labour Day.

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