A cleaner’s leg has been amputated after China’s third escalator accident in a week, this time at a shopping centre in Shanghai.
The 35-year-old man was working after hours on Saturday when his left leg became caught on an escalator where the stairs met the floorplate. He underwent amputation surgery the following day. This latest incident comes just six days after a young mother was killed when she fell through an escalator at a shopping mall in central China, pushing her son to safety in her final moments. Days later, a toddler’s arm was mangled by an escalator in the southern province of Guangxi.
Mall operators and an escalator maintenance company are investigating the latest accident, the South China Morning Post has reported. The mall was defensive in its statement, saying, “The brush of the mop was trapped inside the gap in the stairs, which caused cracks in the comb plate.”
Questions have been raised about escalator manufacturers’ safety standards. After last week’s death, the Communist Party said in a front-page editorial of the People’s Daily, “For the public, questioning and accountability must take place after such an accident.”
Chinese shoppers have been especially wary of escalators this past week. CCTV footage has shown mall patrons checking the machines before mounting them and even jumping over the final steps.