12 injured after escalator suddenly stops in Ibaraki store

IBARAKI —

Twelve people, including three children, were injured when an escalator they were standing on stopped suddenly in a supermarket in Hitachi, Ibaraki Prefecture, on Sunday.

According to police, the incident occurred at around 4 p.m. in an Ito-Yokado store. The escalator going from the 1st floor to the 2nd floor suddenly stopped, causing 12 shoppers to lose their balance and tumble down, Fuji TV reported. Police said the 12 suffered minor injuries to their arms and legs.

A store spokesman said the escalators were last inspected on Dec 6 and that there were no problems. The cause of the malfunction has not yet been determined.

Japan Today

  • -6

    basroil

    So... Perhaps it's a Hitachi elevator? (yes, it's a pun )

    But really, why haven't we heard about the name of this elevator company, or any of the other Japanese elevator companies that built moving deathtraps?

    • Moderator

      It is an escalator, not an elevator.

  • 2

    gogogo

    Only in Japan is an escalator stopping news.

  • -1

    waltery

    Yes I would like to know what brand of escalator it was so I can avoid any such potential accidents, I offen buy and carry knives and other dangerous items in department stores on escalators that may in the event of sudden stop injure someone or myself. I will take more care on escalators in general. Perhaps some signs and other saftey device is needed once we know which brand of escalator it was. It would be nice to see a history of accidents involving escalators. I'm off to wiki!

  • 0

    Tom DeMicke

    I think it could have been worse had the escalator been going down, say for example from the second floor down to the first floor. Still, very dangerous. Hope everyone is okay. Lawsuits, anyone?

  • -1

    tmarie

    A sudden stop shouldn't injure anyone - IF they were paying attention and holding the rails... Chances are...

  • -1

    philsandoz

    As the recorded mantra constantly repeats, "Hold on to the rail".

  • 0

    Trapped

    The mantra is there to be a substitute for the action. Right?

  • 0

    Fadamor

    Even if you were holding the handrail, a sudden stop will catch you off-guard and unless you already had a death-grip on the rail you'll probably lose your balance. All it takes is one person near the top to stumble and a dominoe-effect will happen down the escalator.

    Still it could have been worse. Instead of stopping, the drive train could have snapped causing the escalator to free-wheel everyone to the bottom at a dangerous speed. (link from a Washington D.C. Metro security camera) http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=W5MbQaInrjc

  • 0

    noriyosan73

    In 2004 a man was trying to go up the escalator to the train. He was pulling a portable dolly with a stack of boxes full of heavy objects. Half way up he lost his balance and fell. As he rolled down the escalator continually hit by the boxes, the escalator went up-thus no progress in either directions. Fortunately, an American ALT knew what to do. He ran down the up escalator on the opposite side of (direction) of the track and push the RED button to stop the escalator. Who knows what happened to the victim, but the ALT was thankful he could save the unfortunate traveler. You are welcome traveler. The government needs to spend money on "What to do scenarios" such as this as well as mochi chocking, swimming or canoeing in rivers, and bicycles road laws on TV spots. Elementary school children can develop plots that other children would watch and learn lessons.

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