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Elevator incidents

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An elevator or escalator incident (or even seriously called accident) is usually caused by elevator companies who do not maintain their elevators or escalators properly or due to improper use of the elevators or escalators.

List of elevator or escalators incidents around the world

Chile

ThyssenKrupp elevator incident

Location: Tower B, Bustamante Community Park, Providencia, Chile
Date of incident: June 8, 2014

On June 8, 2014, a ThyssenKrupp elevator in Tower B of Bustamante Community Park in Providencia, Chile, suddenly malfunctioned, then rises 30 floors in 15 seconds with the doors still open before crashed into the shaft's roof. A man was seriously injured, and was reportedly that he suffered head and leg injuries[1] [2].

It was suspected that the brake was picked (opened up) and there was a loss of motor control which cause the elevator into free rolling into the opposite direction.

In addition, the elevator didn't have an unintended car movement protection device (Rope Brake) or an ascending car overspeed protection device (overspeed governor), which means that the elevator "fell" upward since the counterweight weighs more than the elevator cab.

Man slammed into roof after out of control lift rushes up 30 floors in 15 secs01:08

Man slammed into roof after out of control lift rushes up 30 floors in 15 secs

Hong Kong

Kone Marryat Scott PRH elevator downfall

Location: Shin Nga House, Fu Shin Estate, Tai Po
Date of incident: October 25, 2008

On October 25, 2008, a Kone Marryat & Scott elevator in Shin Nga House, Fu Shin Estate, Hong Kong suffered from a downfall incident.

HKDI campus escalator incident

Location: Hong Kong Design Institute (HKDI), Tseung Kwan O
Date of incident: February 4, 2011

On February 24, 2011, some of the escalator landing steps on one of the two ThyssenKrupp escalators at Hong Kong Design Institute (HKDI) in Tseung Kwan O that gives access from level 1 to 7 fell down on the steps which were returning to the seventh floor. The escalator safety device was activated when the steps were falling down[3]. No one was injured in this incident.

North Point restaurant elevator downfall accident

Location: King's Tower (no. 478-480, King's Road), North Point
Date of incident: March 23, 2013

On March 2, 2013, a Mitsubishi elevator in a restaurant plummeted down from 1st floor[4] due to governor fault and wire rope issues[5]. All 7 passengers got injured[6]. Shineford Engineering was held 100% responsible for this incident and EMSD force their "Registered Lift and Escalator Contractors" License cancelled[7]. Finally this elevator being replaced by Schindler (5400 AP MRL) in May, 2014[8] and opened in September, 2014.

China

Shenzhen elevator accident

Location: Louhu District, Shenzhen, China
Date of incident: May 15, 2013

On May 15, 2013, a nurse was decapitated after being caught between the doors of an one of the four Mitsubishi elevators and was dragged along for at least 3 floors. It was reported that the elevator was going down 22 floors when it stopped suddenly between levels 2 and 3. She then tried to exit the elevator, only to be trapped between the closing doors[9][10]. The Wellift elevator company has been held 100% responsible for the incident and was ordered to make compulsory maintenance to all elevators maintained by the company.

Elevator over-travel incident in Tsuen Wan

Location: Waterside Plaza Block 1, Tsuen Wan, Hong Kong, China
Date of incident: January 25, 2014

On January 25, 2014, A Dong Yang elevator in Waterside Plaza Block 1 breakdown and over-travel to the machine room during maintenance. It caused the machine room damaged[11]. The maintenance contractor, Ben Fung was fined HK$3000 by the Court.

Kwun Tong Industrial Building elevator downfall accident

Location: Selwyn Factory Building (no. 404, Kwun Tong Road), Kwun Tong, Kowloon, Hong Kong, China
Date of incident: October 8, 2014

On October 8, 2014, A Falconi passenger elevator (which was held a major alteration in 2011 by third-party elevator maintenance company, Nikkin) in Selwyn Factory Building plummeted down from 12th floor by passengers overloading the elevator, 29 of 31 passengers got injured when 2 passengers already escaped when it begin to downfall (the maximum loading of this elevator are 1600 kgs, or about 21 persons). EMSD needs to increase public awareness of the safe use of lifts and the proper way to prevent overloading of the elevators after this accident[12] such as the new advertising half of the years before[13]. The contractor, thyssenkrupp was fined HK$180,000 and to pay the costs and expenses incurred in the proceedings totalling HK$136,342 for its improper maintenance[14]. Finally this elevator being replaced by thyssenkrupp in November, 2015 and opened in early 2016.[15]

Langham Place escalator out of control accident

Location: Langham Place, Mong Kok, Hong Kong, China
Date of incident: March 25, 2017

A long, 45-meters Otis escalator at Langham Place which ran from the 4th floor up to the 8th floor malfunctioned; it suddenly stopped, reversed and then sped up, causing riders to lose balance, fall and piled up on the bottom. Eighteen people were injured, with one in serious condition. Investigations carried out by the Electrical and Mechanical Services Department (EMSD) revealed that the malfunction was suspected to have been caused by a faulty drive chain, and the safety brake system failed to work[16]. The escalators are maintained by Otis Elevator Company (HK) Co. Ltd. The two company technicians were arrested because of perverting the course of justice as they tried to control and repair it and move the components of the escalator before the accident investigation done by Electrical and Mechanical Services Department.

Indonesia

Ratu Plaza elevator downfall

Location: Ratu Plaza Office Tower, Jakarta, Indonesia
Date of incident: November 16, 2007

On November 16, 2007, a Hitachi elevator which served the two underground floors of Ratu Plaza Office Tower in Jakarta fell down from six meters high and injuring four people. It was reported that the accident was caused by broken suspension ropes. The building manager was held responsible for the accident[17]. The elevator has since been replaced into a new Mitsubishi MRL elevator[18].

Monumen Nasional elevator breakdown

Location: Monumen Nasional, Jakarta, Indonesia
Date of incident: 2002 to 2004

From 2002 to 2004, a series of breakdowns happened on a Hitachi elevator at Monumen Nasional (Monas). On July 8th, 2002, it got malfunctioned and trapping passengers inside. Another incident also happened on March 23rd and May 2nd, 2004, causing people from the observation deck to evacuate using the narrow and poorly lit emergency stairwell.[19]. It was later fully repaired and maintained by PT. Pillar Multi Sarana Utama (a distributor of Guangri elevators in the country), and was finally replaced into a modern Hitachi elevator in late 2013[20].

2014 Kemayoran elevator freefall accident

Location: Rusun Kemayoran Tahap 3 (Kemayoran Public Housing Phase 3), Jakarta, Indonesia
Date of incident: March 9, 2014

On Sunday, March 9, 2014, one of the two Hyundai elevators at Rusun Kemayoran Tahap 3, Kemayoran, Jakarta fell down freely from the 4th floor after the elevator was overloaded with 13 passengers, which supposedly it only carried up to 9 persons. It was reported that the overload detector and buzzer weren't working. Passenger were also warned by the building's operator to not exceed the elevator load but they ignored it. All of the passengers were injured, mostly with fractured bones[21] [22]

2015 Taman Kemayoran elevator downfall incident

Location: Taman Kemayoran apartment, Jakarta, Indonesia
Date of incident: September 30, 2015

At around 1 o'clock afternoon on September 30, 2015, one of the 1990s Hyundai elevators in Cendana Tower of Taman Kemayoran Apartment in Kemayoran, Central Jakarta[23], fell from the 6th floor after it picked up passengers from the 8th floor. Nine Indian people were injured and then treated to Mitra Kemayoran Hospital[24].

The maintenance contract for the elevators was held by PT. Raka Ageng Vetra as of September 2, 2015. According to the building's announcement on October 1, 2015, it was reported that when the car overran to the buffer, the safety brake didn't work properly as the 12 mm sling/wire rope on the overspeed governor had decreased due to it's age[25]. The safety circuit, however, was working properly.

2015 Arkadia elevator incident

Location: Nestle Building, Building B of Perkantoran Hijau Arkadia, Pasar Minggu, South Jakarta, Indonesia
Date of incident: December 10, 2015

At 9:40 AM on December 10, 2015, an elevator designed for PT. Nestle Indonesia employees fell from the 7th floor to the 3rd floor, killing two Nestle employees and injuring one ISS employee[26]. The incident also forced people to evacuate from the building because of the loud bang and vibration caused by the freefalling elevator. Some said that they felt it like an earthquake[27].

Hospital elevator downfall

Location: RSUP Fatmawati, South Jakarta, Indonesia
Date of incident:: Sunday, June 19, 2016

An elevator in the Lotus Building (Gedung Teratai) of Fatmawati Hospital (RSUP Fatmawati) suddenly fell from the 4th floor to the 1st floor due to a loose brake. All the passengers inside were injured. The maintenance company responsible for maintaining and servicing all the elevators in the hospital was PT. Megah Daspa Sentosa, which was said to be unlicensed[28].

Fujitec elevator downfall

Location: BRI II, Central Jakarta, Indonesia
Date of incident: Friday, January 20, 2017

To be added.

Blok M Square elevator downfall

Location: Blok M Square, South Jakarta, Indonesia
Date of incident: Friday, March 17, 2017

Elevator number 5 of Blok M Square, Jakarta, Indonesia fell down from the 7th floor in the afternoon of March 17, 2017. The accident was caused by overloading; the elevator, which could only carrying up to 24 persons or 1600 kilograms, was filled with 25 people, although some sources said that 35 people were entering the elevator. Witnesses said the elevator stopped on the 3rd and the 1st floor (because of safety brake got triggered) during freefall before hitting the bottom floor, injuring 25 people inside[29][30].

Japan

2004 Nagoya elevator incident

Location: Unknown location in Nagoya, Japan
Date of incident: 2004

A Schindler elevator in Nagoya descended while the door was still open. Nobody was injured in this incident. Investigation found that elevator's firmware "TV60 v1.1" had a bug that opens the door when elevator starts moving.

2006 Tokyo elevator incident

Location: Unknown location in Tokyo, Japan
Date of incident: 2006

Three passengers were trapped in the elevator in Tokyo, after the elevator's door opened while it was ascending. Elevator had faulty firmware "TV60 v1.0". The elevator is identified to be a Schindler.

2006 Minato elevator incident

Location: Minato Ward, Tokyo, Japan
Date of incident: June 2006

A Schindler elevator in Minato, Tokyo, started ascending while the door was open. A 16-year-old boy was crushed to death while getting off the elevator with his bicycle. An investigation determined a faulty brake was to blame. When the government investigation team requested Schindler to disclose the information about elevators installed, Schindler declined to comply with the request and investigation claiming that documents contained personal information.

2006 Chiba elevator incident

Location: Unknown location in Urayasu, Chiba, Japan
Date of incident: 2006

A Schindler elevator in Urayasu, Chiba started ascending while the door open, passed the top floor, and finally stopped in the mechanical shaft. Two people were trapped in the car. The elevator had firmware "80TH v1.4" with faulty codes.

2010 Tokyo University incident

Location: Kashiwa Campus, University of Tokyo, Japan
Date of incident: 2010

18 students at the Kashiwa campus of University of Tokyo fell from ground floor to the basement floor in a Schindler elevator with the doors still open. One student incurred a minor injury while trying to escape. Schindler determined the cause to be loose brake wires.

Hotel Kanazawa (Kanazawaekimae) elevator incident

Location: APA Hotel Kanazawa Eikmae, Kanazawa, Ishikawa Prefecture, Japan
Date of incident: Unknown

A 63-year-old woman at APA hotel in (known as APA Hotel Kanazawa Eikmae or APA (ホテル金沢駅前)in Kanazawa (Ishikawa Prefecture), was crushed to death between the ceiling and the floor, when the Schindler elevator started moving while the door was still open.

Russia

Never maintained older Sovietic elevator modernized in 2001 by Otis MCS-300

Location: Ostrovityanova 49, Kon'kovo, Moscow, Russia
Date of incident: December 19, 2015

On December 19, 2015, an older Sovietic elevator modernized in 2001 by Otis MCS-300 at Ostrovityanova 49 in Moscow, Russia, young mother rolled her stroller into the elevator and the elevator suddenly broke the rope and as a result of the arrival of one floor stroller ripped and 10 month old girl died.

Singapore

Damaged Fujitec elevator in Tampines

Location: Block 17 Marsiling Lane HDB, Singapore
Date of incident: June 9, 2013

On June 9, 2013, a Fujitec elevator at Block 17 Marsiling Lane HDB, Singapore was badly damaged with the landing doors on the ground floor dislodged from the door tracks. It was reported that the elevator damage was due to a door alignment defect, which was suspected to be due to vandalism, but it turns out that the damage was suspected to be from misuse by workers. A spokesperson for Fujitec said that workers who move materials in and out of the elevator would use a piece of cardboard or wood to wedge the doors open. This repeated force into the gap, would cause the safety edge to become loose, and lean outwards towards the landing doors and get stuck when the elevator goes upwards, causing the doors to be dislodged from the door tracks.

Malfunctioned Otis elevator in Tampines

Location: HDB block in Tampines, Singapore
Date of incident: May 2013

On May 2013, an elevator in a HDB block in Tampines suddenly ascended with the doors still open when a five years old boy was about to exit the elevator. He was pulled back by his father. After ringing the alarm bell repeatedly , the elevator doors closed and the elevator ascended to the top floor and became out of order . The elevator was identified to be Otis.

Bukit Batok West elevator breakdown

Location: Block 115 Bukit Batok West HDB, Singapore
Date of incident: October 18, 2010

On October 18, 2010, an elevator at Block 115 Bukit Batok West HDB which identified to be a ULift had broke down and caused two youngsters to be trapped inside for an hour. Both youngsters were not injured. An investigation had shown that the interlocks have been misused by renovation workers renovating a flat. The renovation company was fined S$2000 and was ordered to pay for the repair works on the elevator.

Series of breakdowns on upgraded EM Services elevator

A series of breakdowns on a batch of upgraded EM Services elevator has been caused by a misalignment of the door's interlocks, which would occasionally get stuck. EM Services has fixed the elevators and Shenyang Brilliant elevator was held responsible and had to bear the full cost of the repair works, with an additional $100 fine for every elevator fixed.

Faber Crest Condominium elevator incident

Location: Faber Crest Condominium, Singapore
Date of incident: December 2008

A Hitachi elevator in Faber Crest Condominium had overshot and hit the roof in December 2008, thus damaging the machinery badly. In 2009, the elevator was re-installed into a small machine room (SMR) elevator.

Marina Bay Sands Tower 2 elevator incident

A Kone elevator at Marina Bay Sands opened its doors midway on its journey to the first floor. The doors opened slightly before coming to an abrupt stop and continued jerking downwards for 3 floors. The elevator then free fell 2 floors before returning to normal service. Elevator filmer circleline28 was in the elevator when the incident happened but could not film the incident due to a flat battery in his phone

Taman Jurong elevator incident

Main article: Block 322 Tah Ching Road elevator accident
Location: Block 322 Tah Ching Road HDB, Taman Jurong, Singapore
Date of incident: October 9, 2015

On 9th of October 2015 at 7.27am , a woman's hand was severed by an elevator at Block 322 Tah Ching Road HDB, located in Taman Jurong, western Singapore[31]. The woman's dog was outside the elevator and the elevator doors closed and ascended. As the dog leash was strapped over her hand, the force of the ascend severed her wrist. The elevator is an Express Lift elevator that is maintained by Sigma Elevator Company Singapore. The incident has prompted a Committee Of Inquiry and a full report is out. The woman involved is in stable condition.The sensors on the lift was found to be working and safety devices were in good condition.

United Kingdom

Health club elevator incident

Location: A health club in London, United Kingdom
Date of incident: March 12, 2003

On March 12, 2003, a banker was crushed to death by a ThyssenKrupp elevator which was not properly maintained in a health club in London, England. The health club owner and ThyssenKrupp were fined £466,000 after the accident.

References

  1. Man injured when out of control elevator rises 30 floors in 15 seconds, crashes into roof - FOX8 News
  2. [FULL VIDEO] Malfunction Elevator Goes Up Crashing Through The Roof In Chile - YouTube
  3. Technical Investigation Report on Escalator Incident at the Hong Kong Design Institute, Tseung Kwan O (Chinese version) (Electrical and Mechanical Services Department, Hong Kong - 9 June 2011).
  4. Lift wire rope broke cause 7 passengers got injured (Chinese only)
  5. Technical Investigation Report on Lift Incident at 478-480 King’s Road, North Point, Hong Kong (Chinese version) (Electrical and Mechanical Services Department, Hong Kong - July 2013)
  6. Seven injured in lift accident in North Point building (South China Morning Post, Hong Kong - March 3, 2013)
  7. EMSD cancels registration of Shineford Engineering Limited as lift and escalator contractor (Information Services Department, Hong Kong - September 30, 2013).
  8. Lift no. 5 at no. 478-480, King's Road, North Point will be replaced by Schindler (Discussion conversation in hkitalk.net)
  9. Shocking CCTV Footage - Nurse Decapitated in Horrific Lift Accident in ShenZhen, China - 15/5/13
  10. Death of nurse in elevator due to maintenance not properly, CCTV, China (Chinese only)
  11. The Sun: A lift "shoot" to the machine room and make the machine room damaged, February 2, 2014 (Chinese only)
  12. Technical Investigation Report on Lift Incident at Selwyn Factory Building, 404 Kwun Tong Road, Kwun Tong, Kowloon (Chinese version) (Electrical and Mechanical Services Department, Hong Kong - April 2015)
  13. Don’t overload lift (Chinese version)
  14. Disciplinary action taken against registered lift contractor (Information Services Department, Hong Kong - July 22, 2016).
  15. 時運工業大廈升降機跟進 (#5:貨機消息一則)
  16. VIDEOS: 18 injured after 45-metre-long escalator reverses and speeds up in Mong Kok - Coconuts Hong Kong
  17. Kecelakaan Lift, Tanggung Jawab Pengelola Ratu Plaza - Tempo.co (Indonesian)
  18. Mitsubishi Traction Elevator at Ratu Plaza Office Tower, Jakarta (Car Park)
  19. Lift Monas Macet, Pengunjung Terjebak - Liputan6 News (Indonesian)
  20. National Monument, Jakarta: New Hitachi Traction Elevator
  21. Diisi 13 Orang, Lift di Rusun Kemayoran Terjun Bebas Dari Lantai 4 (Indonesian)
  22. Rekaman CCTV 17 Korban Lift Terjun Bebas di Rusun di Kemayoran (YouTube)
  23. Old Hyundai Traction Scenic Lifts at Taman Kemayoran Condominium, Jakarta (Bougenville Tower)
  24. ​Elevator falls in Central Jakarta apartment building due to faulty cable, injuring 9
  25. Pengumuman Kecelakaan Lift Cendana (Indonesian)
  26. Kronologi Jatuhnya Lift Maut Perkantoran Arkadia - Liputan6.com (Indonesian)
  27. Lift Gedung Arkadia Jatuh, Karyawan Merasa Seperti Gempa Bumi - Liputan6.com (Indonesian). Elevator lobby is seen here.
  28. Perawat Lift Tak Berlisensi (Indonesian)
  29. Begini Rangkaian Kejadian Lift Jatuh Di Blok M Square (Indonesian)
  30. Greater Jakarta: 25 injured in elevator incident in Blok M - The Jakarta Post
  31. Woman's hand severed after it got stuck between HDB lift doors

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