Man breaks neck on new attraction at Country Fest - WQOW TV: Eau Claire, WI NEWS18 News, Weather, and Sports

Man breaks neck on new attraction at Country Fest


Cadott (AP/WQOW) -- Authorities in Chippewa County say a festival attraction in which participants jump 25 feet onto an inflatable air-bag left one man with a broken neck, one person with a broken ankle and two others injured.

The attraction was new this year at Country Fest in Cadott. More than 3,000 people made the jump. The cost to jump was $10 per person.

Sheriff's Capt. Gene Gutsch says one person sprained their back on Saturday. That person was treated and released while another person was treated and released for a sprained ankle. Festival organizers say a woman broke her ankle when she exited the air bag on the wrong side and hit a support pole. A man broke his neck Sunday. Gutsch says the man underwent emergency surgery.

General Manager of Chippewa Valley Music Festivals Wade Asher says the man with the broken neck was not following the rules of the attraction. Participants are told to jump feet first. He says the man was doing somersaults in the air and landed wrong.

Asher says the neck injury happened late Sunday, and if he'd been aware of the injuries sooner he would have shut down the attraction. He also says the attraction won't be included next year.

Prior to Country Fest, Asher says he checked the safety of the attraction with several other festivals. He added they work hard to have a safe event.

Country Fest ran from Thursday through Sunday.

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