Please Stand on Metro Escalators, General Manager Says | NBC4 Washington

Adam Tuss and the News4 team covering everything that slows you down on roads and transit

Please Stand on Metro Escalators, General Manager Says

The world's largest escalator maker says riders should stand in the center of the steps



    All five underground escalators at the Bethesda Metro station now are working. News4's Mark Segraves reports on the impact for riders, plus what Metro General Manager Paul Wiedefeld said about why you shouldn't walk on the escalators.

    (Published Wednesday, March 22, 2017)

    Walk to the left, stand to the right? Metro General Manager Paul Wiedefeld said Metro would prefer that you stand.

    The head of Washington's Metro system said Wednesday that the custom of standing on the right side of a Metro escalator to clear the way for people to walk on the left damages escalators.

    "We do not promote, obviously, the walking on the left. These are very sensitive pieces of equipment," he said as officials unveiled a new escalator at the Bethesda station.

    It's best for escalators when riders stand on both sides of the steps, Wiedefeld said.

    DC Metro Boss Clarifies Remarks About Standing on Escalators

    DC Metro Boss Clarifies Remarks About Standing on Escalators

    Metro General Manager Paul Wiedefeld offered some clarification Thursday on his remarks Wednesday about why Metro advises that people stand, not walk, on the system's escalators. News4's Adam Tuss reports.

    (Published Thursday, March 23, 2017)

    He seemed resigned to the notion that commuters will continue to follow widespread escalator etiquette.

    "We prefer that they stand as they move up the escalator, but also we know what people will do what they want to do," he said.

    On the "Metrorail Rules and Manners" page of the transit authority's website, passengers are advised to "Stand to the right facing forward. Walk on the left."

    When asked on Thursday about his remarks, Wiedefeld said Metro riders need to stay safe on escalators to avoid accidents.

    "My point is, you've got a 10-story moving escalator, and if you fall, it's not going to be good. That's what I was trying to get to. Just look at those escalators. There's no landings. Once you fall, you're going. That's what I was suggesting," he said.

    The escalator company Otis, which calls itself the world's largest escalator manufacturer, recommends that riders stand in the center of the steps.

    Dog Delivers Basket of Water on Baseball Field

    [NATL] Dog Delivers Basket of Water on Baseball Field

    A viral video of minor league baseball dog delivering water at a Fort Wayne TinCaps game has surfaced on Twitter.

    Video of 'Jake the Diamond Dog' was posted as the golden retriever carried a basket filled with bottled water out to the umpire between innings taken at a recent game.

    The video was posted by Indiana news station WPTA's sports anchor Zach Groth.

    Jake delivers water to umpires on the field in a basket and reportedly makes an appearance at a variety of minor league baseball games and has done so for several years.

    (Published 3 hours ago)

    "It has always been our position that one should not walk on escalators," a company spokeswoman said. "Codes and standards vary from jurisdiction to jurisdiction, but our recommendation is for escalator passengers to step on, hold on to the rail and stay alert."

    Walking on an escalator should not damage it, the Otis spokeswoman said. 

    Kone, the company contracted to provided Metro’s newest escalators, also recommends for safety reasons that escalator users stand rather than walk. A company spokesman said most people are accustomed to stepping up and down steps that are each 7 inches high. Escalator steps are typically 8 1/2 inches high, he said.

    “The one-and-a-half-inch difference plays tricks on your subconscious mind and creates the trip-and-fall hazard,” the Kone spokesman said.

    The director of San Francisco's Bay Area Transit (BART) System received a flood of angry tweets when he made remarks on Twitter earlier this year that were similar to Wiedefeld's, the San Francisco Chronicle reported.

    “My Twitter feed has been explosive,” Bevan Dufty told the paper. “It’s like I had a fire hose pointed at me: ‘This is a conspiracy,’ ‘Don’t believe it,’ ‘It’s a lie.’”

    Man Hit By Bus, Flung Across Sidewalk Walks Away

    [NATL] Man Hit By Bus, Flung Across Sidewalk Walks Away

    A bus in Reading, England, swerved around a corner and hit a pedestrian on June 24, sending the man sliding across the pavement. The man stood up and walked into the Purple Turtle pub without major injuries.

    (Published Wednesday, June 28, 2017)

    Dufty cited a Wall Street Journal article that said transportation chiefs in China found that standing on the right damaged that side of the equipment.

    Two British researchers found in a study of the London subway system last year that the overall group of people in a subway station can move through the station faster if everyone stands on the escalators.

    "...[A]verage queue lengths would drop by enforcing the standing policy," Shivam Desai and Lukas Dobrovsky found. "This means less time spent at the bottom of the escalator, and more people can flow through the station."

    Another escalator company NBC Washington contacted, Schindler, did not immediately respond to an inquiry about how best to ride an escalator.