On monday morning an escalator at a New Jersey commuter rail station suddenly switched direction leaving 5 injured.
The escalator malfunctioned at the the Exchange Place PATH (Port Authority Trans-Hudson) at 9 am in Jersey City. It was ascending then suddenly reversed in high speed causing mass chaos and panic.
According to Port Authority Spokesman Ron Marisco, 5 people were injured and 3 were taken to the hospital as a precaution. Luckily none of the injuries are considered life-threatening. Marisco reports that most injuries have ranged from bumps and bruises to neck and back pains.
Nick Lurkish of Brooklyn, New York tells ABC News he was headed to work and halfway up the escalator when it reversed:
“There was a stampede at the base of the escalator. People started to panic and yell and scream, and I saw some people jump over to the down side of the escalator, so I jumped.”
After the incident 2 of the stations 3 escalators were shut down and patrons were forced to use the stairs to get to the street.
Alex Rodriguez was on his way to work when the malfunction happened. He was on the opposite escalator and quickly took out his phone to record a video. He tells CNN:
“Everyone started looking around and then it starts to go down at an accelerated rate. At that point, people started piling up towards the bottom and couldn’t get off the escalator fast enough. You could hear people screaming, people were jumping off the sides. People lined up against the wall at the bottom (were) crying after they got off.”
Here is the video Rodriguez took of the escalator malfunction:
There is currently no explanation for the escalator malfunction and the station’s other escalators currently remain out of use.
Another less dangerous escalator was in the news recently for officially being the world’s smallest escalator.
Do you prefer to take the escalator or the stairs?