Frequently Asked Questions About Amusement Rides

QUESTION: How often are amusement devices required to be inspected and permitted in South Carolina?

ANSWER: Every amusement device is required to be inspected annually. Once an amusement device passes inspection, the Office of Elevators and Amusement Rides issues a permit that expires on December 31st of each year. Additionally, all amusement ride owners are required to perform daily inspections.

QUESTION: How does the general public know if a ride has been inspected by the State of South Carolina?

ANSWER: Each amusement device is required to have a current operating permit visibly displayed. Also, you can look on our website to see if the ride has been inspected: https://eservice.llr.sc.gov/ARLookup/

QUESTION: Where can I get a copy of the South Carolina Amusement Ride Safety Code?

ANSWER: Download the South Carolina Amusement Ride Codes.

QUESTION: Does the Office of Elevators and Amusement Rides require inspections for air-supported structures?

ANSWER: No, the Office of Elevators and Amusement Rides does not regulate or inspect air-supported structures.

QUESTION: Does the Office of Elevators and Amusement Rides require inspections for water parks?

ANSWER: No, the Office of Elevators and Amusement Rides does not regulate or inspect water parks, unless there are mechanical devices incorporated with the water park.

QUESTION: Can someone operate an amusement ride if they do not speak English?

ANSWER: State Amusement Ride Regulations require that all operators must be able to speak and comprehend the English language sufficiently to communicate with patrons, follow instructions and comprehend the operating fact sheet.

QUESTION: How old must someone be to operate an amusement ride?

ANSWER: For this information, contact Labor Services at (803) 896-7756. Please be mindful of child labor regulations.

QUESTION: Do you regulate zip lines?

ANSWER: It depends. Yes, if the operation involves a mechanical braking system, however; we do not regulate zip lines if the operation does not involve a mechanical braking system.

QUESTION: Do you regulate slides?

ANSWER: It depends. Yes, we regulate portable slides, however; we do not regulate inflatable slides.

QUESTION: Do you regulate rock climbing walls.

ANSWER: It depends. No, we do not regulate permanent rock-climbing walls, however; we do regulate portable rock-climbing walls with a mechanical braking system.

QUESTION: Do you regulate gyros?

ANSWER: No, we do not regulate non-motorized gyros, however; we do regulate motorized gyros.

QUESTION: Do you regulate trampolines?

ANSWER: It depends. No, we do not regulate standard trampolines, however; we do regulate bungee trampolines with a mechanical component.

QUESTION: Do you regulate rope courses?

ANSWER: It depends. No, we do not inspect rope courses unless the rope course has zip stops, quick flights, or other mechanical devices.

QUESTION: What devices are NOT inspected in South Carolina?

ANSWER: Section 41-18-40 (1) of the South Carolina Amusement Rides Safety Code defines an amusement device as “any mechanical device or combination of devices which carries or conveys passengers on, along, around, over, or through a fixed or restricted course or within a defined area for the purpose of giving its passengers amusement, pleasure, or excitement.” The South Carolina Department of Labor, Licensing and Regulation does not regulate the following devices because they do not meet the definition of an amusement device or are exempted by law:

  • dirt bikes (motocross)
  • inflatable devices (bounce houses)
  • water walking devices
  • trackless trains
  • monster trucks
  • speed boats
  • racing karts
  • super karts
  • hang gliding
  • hot air balloons
  • galaxy meltdowns
  • ATV vehicles
  • hay rides

If you have any questions about whether your amusement device is regulated by LLR, please call 803-896-7630.