Part of Foggy Bottom Metro Escalator "Collapses": Report

Friday, Feb 18, 2011  |  Updated 8:05 PM EDT
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Several steps of an escalator at the Foggy Bottom station apparently collapsed into the machinery.

John Schriffen

Several steps of an escalator at the Foggy Bottom station apparently collapsed into the machinery.

There are reports that a portion of an escalator at the Foggy Bottom Metro station "collapsed" at about 9:15 a.m. Friday while commuters were on it.  Metro, however, could not confirm the reports and said there were no reports of injuries.

A picture shared on Twitter by @srochedc

(via @jasonlifton) showed several stairs at the bottom of the escalator out of their track,

according to the blog UnsuckDCMetro

.

Witnesses said a woman fell through a tile. The woman was not seriously injured and refused treatment at the scene, according to Metro.

An alleged witness named "Tom" who wrote to the blog gave the following description:

After unloading from a train, people were exiting the gates, and a Metro employee was telling everyone leaving the station to take the left hand escalator because the right hand was broken. Despite this, people were still walking down the right hand escalator.

So everyone starts trudging up the left, until...

The bottom two or three steps of the escalator literally collapsed! They fell through leaving a gaping hole at the bottom of the stairs. Two or three people fell in. I would say it was about a three foot drop into jagged steel from the overturned stairs, not to mention whatever else is underneath the escalator. The people managed to pull themselves out and didn't look seriously injured, but one woman was pretty shaken up.

To read more of the alleged witness's story, click here.

Metro said all entrance escalators were out of service, and shuttle bus service was requested, but the station remained open.

NBC Washington's John Schriffen reported that at 11:45 a.m., the one escalator in question was reopened for people to walk up and down.  Two other escalators remained closed completely.  There was a large backup as people were trying to use the one escalator to go up and down at the same time.

Metro said it cannot confirm any customer reports or complaints. However, they confirm that they are making repairs to the escalator that was not working at the station. Earlier, only one escalator was operating -- upward. The second escalator that was not working is now being repaired to be used as a walker.

Metro said it informed customers last month that the station would be undergoing a year-long escalator repair project.

Stay with NBCWashington.com for more information.

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