Stratosphere's Newest Ride Malfunctions - 8 News NOW

Stratosphere's Newest Ride Malfunctions

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Two thrill-seekers got a little more fright last night than they bargained for when the Stratosphere hotel-casino's newest ride malfunctioned leaving two girls stranded.

The girls -- ages 19 and 11 -- spent more than an hour dangling on the "Insanity" ride about nine hundred feet above the Las Vegas Strip.

Shortly before 1 a.m. as brutal winds were blowing against the tower, the ride suddenly malfunctioned. In the darkness of night, the girls dangled in mid-air. The ride swings out over the edge of the tower platform and spins riders at the end of finger-like mechanical arms.

"It's bad up there. It's really windy," said Lisa Regnell, who came Michele Hoak to the base of the tower after seeing the ride stop. "All the workers are up there trying their very best to get them. But there's no way they can get to them," said Michele Hoak.

"It was so windy, they were trying to yell to us. We couldn't hear anything," said Erica McKinnon, who was one of the girls trapped on the ride. The other girl, 11-year-old Gabriella Cecineros was fighting to keep warm. "My body was like frozen. I couldn't move. My legs and arms were like numb. I couldn't feel nothing." Seeking warmth, the girls held hands and clutched their bodies together. They sat and waited, suspended more than 60 feet off the edge of the tower.

"I didn't think I was going to get down. I was trying to stay calm. So she wouldn't be scared. But I had never been that scared in my life," McKinnon said, as she tried to comfort her younger cousin.

Technicians were eventually able to pull the main brace back to the tower platform after 1 a.m. Neither girl was hurt. Both were greeted with warm blankets and two cups of hot chocolate.

"I'm just happy I'm down here now," Cecineros said. A thrilling ride, designed to play on people's biggest fears and giving these two girls the ride of their lives.

It is unknown this morning why the ride stopped. Calls to the Stratosphere hotel have not been returned.

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