There are thousands of escalators in the U.A.E that transport billions of passengers per year. We rely on these machines every day to get us from place to place, which unfortunately makes many of us take them for granted. At Atlas Elevators, passenger safety is our number one concern, however, not even scheduled maintenance and best practices can prevent injuries caused by equipment misuse.
As the holiday season approaches, escalators will see a surge in traffic as people flock to malls and department stores for holiday season shopping and end of season sales, as well as the millions that will head to airports. Escalators enable large amounts of people to move from place to place quickly. It’s important to remember that these machines require you to be attentive while riding, and avoid situations that put you and other riders at risk.
To raise awareness of potential safety risks, the Technical Standards and Safety Authority (TSSA), the elevator and escalator code authority of Ontario, Canada, has produced a set of public safety videos demonstrating activities that increase the risk of injury on an escalator. We find these videos a good reminder, and warning, of the increased dangers of equipment misuse during the holiday shopping madness.
Children can often mistake an escalator as a fun ride and easily put themselves in harm’s way. Parents need to keep a watchful eye on children on an escalator. Something as innocuous as a dropped toy can result in an injury if a child were to reach down to the comb plate.
If falling down a staircase was scary, what about a staircase that moves? There are a lot of things that could go wrong on an escalator, no matter how frequently you have travelled on one. They are an even bigger source of worry for parents. If you are a parent, you may have surely experienced the lurch in the stomach every time you see your child run towards an escalator. However, escalator safety is less discussed and focused upon when compared to other means of travel.
If you have been keeping track of news in the UAE lately, you will have learned that a new circular issued by the Dubai Municipality concerns safety of escalators for protections of children in particular. The circular mandates installation of safety features on escalators to prevent children from getting hurt. The law is directed at owners of public buildings and malls. So, the question is- how can you keep escalators safe?
We have put together a few methods building owners can use to ensure escalator safety, and we highly recommend their implementation.
• Provide handrail and skirt brushes to prevent clothes, among other things, from being trapped along the edges of the escalator.
• Ensure that all components like handrails are appropriately covered and do not pose a threat to the users. Avoid exposed parts at all costs!
• Are the comb plates installed perfectly? Make sure all necessary safety checks are conducted on the components.
• There are a dozen monitors for different components that regulate their operation. If you value the safety of your customers, investing in a well-secured escalator is your best option.
• Small safety measures like pictographs may seem insignificant, but kids do notice them and may learn a few safety lessons in the process.
Note to parents: Ultimately, the best security and safety system for a kid is the parents. It is hence, wise to always keep an eye- and an arm- on your child while using escalators.