Averting the rolling danger
Some people are afraid to travel by lift, but the self-evident trip on the escalator is far more dangerous, warn Dekra experts.
“There are regular accidents with severe injuries on escalators in stations, department stores and airports,” reported Dirk Blettermann, Dekra expert for lifts and escalators. According to estimates, more incidents occur on escalators and moving pavements than in lifts.
Small children are at risk
Dangers arise on escalators when loose objects, such as open shoelaces, scarves, pullovers or long hair get trapped when the steps begin to move. Small children in particular are at risk on escalators. In the event of falls or playing on the steps, fingers can be crushed or get trapped with hair, clothes or shoes.
“That is why it’s important to keep a hold on small children or take them on your arm,” according to Blettermann. “Due to the great risk of getting trapped in the stairs, no playing, running, pushing or climbing is allowed.”
Paying attention to a secure stance
The risk is even greater for senior citizens. Since older people lose their balance more easily, they can fall and get trapped in the moving steps. Holding on well and paying attention to a secure stance is especially important for them. This applies especially to getting on and leaving the escalator or if the stairs suddenly start to move from a stop. Moreover, everyone should keep their feet at a distance from the sides and not let themselves be distracted by smartphones. And you should never get onto a blocked escalator.
At the top and bottom of all escalators there is a red emergency stop switch with which the escalator can be stopped; in the case of longer escalators there are also switches in-between.