Since their inception in the early nineteenth century, escalators have effectively and quickly made a nice alternative to getting around within a building. Though they may seem simple in practice, escalators are responsible for over 10,000 injuries in the United States every year. There is a common misconception that the accidents are caused by those who use the escalators however, more of often than not, the accidents are caused by factors outside an elevator rider’s control.
Some of the causes of escalator accidents are:
Escalators need to be maintained and tested to full, safe operation. Failure to do so could result in mechanical failures, which can lead to accidents.
The steps on an escalator, though durable, can wear out over time. Constant use and little in the way of maintenance can lead to a broken step. This can cause a rider to fall or become trapped within the escalator.
An escalator’s handrail should be firmly secured. In the event that it’s not, a loose or broken handrail can get in the way of the regular operation of an escalator. This could lead to a sudden stop or decrease in speed before and increase in speed. These changes can catch a rider off guard and lead to a serious injury.
The comb plate, which is at the bottom and top of an escalator, needs to be firmly secured with no gap. When a comb plate comes loose or is installed with a gap, a rider could get trapped. These kinds of accidents could be devastating and could result in severe cutting, or even a lost foot.