What Not to Wear: Helpful Escalator Safety Tips

Escalator safety

Did you know that when riding an escalator some footwear, including foam clogs and flip-flops, can be dangerous? Every year, children and adults sustain injuries to their toes and feet at shopping malls, hotels, and other areas with escalators.

According to ABC News article, some people have reported that kids wearing foam clogs have had their feet sucked into the side of escalators.

Luckily, companies including Schindler Elevator Corporation and groups like the Elevator Escalator Safety Foundation have published useful escalator safety tips for the riding public. While some tips may seem like common sense (e.g., step on and off carefully), there are other things you may not have considered. It is especially critical to review these safety tips with children.

Below is a list of escalator safety tips from Schindler’s website:

  • Watch the direction of the moving step and step on and off with extra care.
  • Take care if you are wearing bifocals or similar eyewear.
  • Hold children firmly with one arm or hold child’s free hand.
  • Hold small packages firmly in one hand, but always leave one hand available to hold the handrail.
  • Grasp the handle as you step onto the moving step.
  • Do not go in the opposite direction of the escalator.
  • Do not take wheelchairs, electric scooters, strollers, hand carts, luggage carts or similar items on the escalator.
  • When riding escalators: Keep loose clothing clear of steps and sides.
  • Wear closed-toed and hard-soled shoes, and avoid wearing footwear made of soft-resin or other rubbery materials.
  • Stand clear of the sides of the escalator.
  • Face forward and keep firm grip on the handrail.
  • Reposition your hand slowly if the handrail moves ahead or behind the steps.
  • Don’t climb onto or ride the handrail.
  • Do not let children sit on steps or stand too close to sides.
  • When exiting escalators: Don’t hesitate and step off promptly.
  • Make sure to step over the comb fingers; don’t let your feet slide off the end of the escalator.
  • Immediately move clear of the escalator exit area; don’t stop to talk or look around since other passengers may be behind you.

While the list of safety tips included in this post is surely thorough, remember that, in the event of an emergency, pushing the “STOP” button at the top or bottom of an escalator will immediately halt the machine.

Also, if you have children in your life, ElevatorInfo would like to introduce you to the Elevator Escalator Safety Foundation. EESF, the leading resource for educational programs that teach children and adults how to properly ride elevators, escalators, and moving walks safely, has an excellent website that offers plenty of practical, hands-on methods to help kids learn about safe riding rules on elevators, escalators, and moving walks.