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Stuck Carnival Ride Leaves State Fairgoers Spinning For Long Time

August 26, 1990

FALCON HEIGHTS, Minn. (AP) _ Several people on an amusement ride at the Minnesota State Fair became ill when workers were unable to stop it for at least 15 minutes.

″No one was in any danger, but they got spun for a long time,″ Jerry Hammer, the fair’s spokesman, said after the incident Saturday. ″What we wound up with was a lot of sick people.″

Riders suffered dizziness and vomiting, and some were taken to a hospital in nearby St. Paul, he said.

Hammer didn’t know how many people were on the ride when it malfunctioned, but estimated the attraction holds about two dozen.

The ride, called the Enterprise, is a wheel that lies flat on the ground, with cars attached to the outside of the wheel. There’s an arm that raises the wheel so it can spin perpendicular to the ground. After a short time, it’s supposed to slowly settle back down to the ground, but on Saturday night it failed to do that.

″The ride operators noticed it immediately and instituted emergency procedures,″ he said. ″Those procedures are to lower it manually, and it worked beautifully, exactly the way it was supposed to.″

But instead of the usual four-minute thrill, riders were spun for 15 to 20 minutes, Hammer said.

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