Know the Steps to Safety When Using Escalators, Some shoes more likely than others to pose risk

May 13, 2008
Release Number: 08-264

Each year the ride between floors is made easier when an estimated 90 billion riders use an escalator. Although most of those rides are without incident, the CPSC estimates there were approximately 11,000 escalator related injuries in 2007. The majority of these injuries are from falls but 10 percent occur when hands, feet or shoes are trapped in escalators.

The most common entrapment is to the foot. Soft-sided shoes are the most likely to get stuck and pose the possibility of injury to the rider. CPSC is aware of 77 entrapment incidents since January 2006, with about half resulting in injury. All but two of the incidents involved popular soft-sided flexible clogs and slides.

Here are some steps you can take to prevent escalator injuries:

-Make sure shoes are tied before getting on an escalator.

-Stand in the center of the step and be sure to step off of the escalator at the end of your ride.

-Always hold children's hands on escalators and do not permit children to sit or play on the steps.

-Do not bring children onto escalators in strollers, walkers, or carts.

-Always face forward and hold the handrail.

-Avoid the sides of steps where entrapment can occur.

-Learn where the emergency shutoff buttons are in case you need to stop the escalator.