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Escalator riders told to avoid ‘killer panel’ following shopping mall horror

Instructions on how to avoid falling into escalators went viral online following the tragic death of a woman who was dragged into the gears of an escalator in a central China shopping mall.

According to the instructions, posted online earlier this week, there are three metal panels at each end of an escalator, connecting the machine to the floor. According to the safety video, the first and the third panels are safe to stand on while the second one is potentially dangerous since it is hollow underneath.

It is unclear wh0 originally posted the video and experts have said the information contained within is factually inaccurate.

china escalator death

The three panels on the top of an escalator. Photo: CCTV13 footage.

According to state broadcaster CCTV,  it should be safe to stand on all three panels at the end of an escalator provided it is well-made and properly installed.

The broadcaster said all three panels in fact concealed hollow spaces of various sizes, the CCTV report said, citing an escalator expert.

But the expert’s reassurance was not enough to allay the fears of escalator riders, some of whom were filmed trying to avoid the “killer panel” through an array of methods.


In a video shared by state news agency Xinhua on its Twitter account, a woman tests the metal panels with a stick before she boards the escalator. Another skirts around the second panel whilst alighting.

Escalator riders told to avoid 'killer panel' following shopping mall horror