26 October 2016
The No. 3 elevator (inset) at TImes Square was back in operation within half an hour. Photos: HKEJ, Apple Daily
The No. 3 elevator (inset) at TImes Square was back in operation within half an hour. Photos: HKEJ, Apple Daily

8 rescued after lift in Times Square plummets 4 stories

Eight people experienced a four-story free fall at Times Square in Causeway Bay on Sunday afternoon.

But it wasn’t for the thrill, and their fear was real.

The three men and five women were trapped in an elevator, Apple Daily reported Monday.

A woman who gave her name as Mrs. Mak was quoted as saying she got into the No. 3 elevator on the ninth floor at about 1:20 p.m. to go to the 18th floor, where she had arranged to meet her family.

When the elevator reached the 18th floor, the door did not open.

Instead, two loud bangs were heard, Mak said.

The next thing she and the other seven passengers knew was the elevator started plummeting.

The fall lasted about five seconds.

It eventually stopped at the 14th floor.

The air conditioning system was no longer working.

While no one was injured, a middle-aged woman said she could not breathe and nearly fainted, Mak said.

One man in the elevator kept pressing the button for the emergency bell.

One of the shopping mall staff tried to calm the passengers down over the intercom, saying engineering workers were doing everything they could to get them out.

They were finally rescued at about 1:30 p.m.

Still shaking, Mak took a different elevator down to the second floor.

The No. 3 elevator was stopped for inspection and was back in normal operation at 2 p.m.

A Times Square spokesman said later that the management took the incident seriously and has conducted thorough checks of the elevators with the help of the elevator contractor and the Electrical and Mechanical Services Department.

He said all the mall’s escalators and elevators have been subjected to regular maintenance.

On Aug. 2, several pieces broke off a moving escalator at Times Square.

It had to be stopped for repairs.

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