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Woman dies after falling down elevator shaft in Hyogo

20 Comments

A 57-year-old woman died from injuries after she fell down the elevator shaft at a food processing plant in Himeji City on Wednesday.

Another employee working at the Ogawa Foods plant noticed the freight elevator’s doors on the second floor were left open, and saw the woman lying on the floor of the elevator shaft, wedged between the elevator below and the wall. Ambulance personnel rushed to the scene and took her to hospital, but the woman died shortly after due to her severe head injuries.

Police said the elevator had manual doors that could only be opened when the elevator arrived at the floor. They said the woman was moving stock down to the first floor, and that it was possible she didn’t notice the elevator wasn’t there.

A spokesman for the company said that the elevator had stopped between floors in the past, but that they had it repaired.

© News reports

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20 Comments
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A freak accident?..RIP.

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Another Schindler Lift?

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Sherman: Trust me... if it were a foreign elevator company the press would be all over it, and I'm sure that's the first thing they checked. Since the elevator company is not mentioned, assume it's Japanese.

My question is, what are these people doing when they step into the shaft? I mean, I can KIND of understand how a 73 year old man, like the guy last week, could miss it, but what was this woman doing? Probably emailing on her cell while walking in and didn't bother to notice the elevator 'car' had not arrived.

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If she was carrying a large box, she wouldn't have been able to see there was no elevator.

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The elevators are trying to kill people. Keep your eyes open and watch your step.

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freak accident. It was a food processing plant, not some office or hotel. She was likely carrying something, or doing something work related, having used the elevator hundreds of times before. An elevator door opening with no car present should be absolutley unacceptable regardless of the manufacturer, and should warrant more than a cursory investigation.

Having to look inside an elevator to make sure there is a car present is a little bit beyond normal safety awareness, IMO.

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I think in everyday life, we anticipate lots of things and don't realize we're even doing so. I can imagine how this could easily happen, even to myself. People go out onto crosswalks al the time without carefully looking, most of the time they are lucky.

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bloody hell. nasty

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A spokesman for the company said that the elevator had stopped between floors in the past, but that they had it repaired.

Well not 100% it seems R.I.P

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Actually, it is quite common for people used to riding elevators to imeadiately step forward into the elevator as soon as the doors open. In this case it was a tragic accident. I was recently stuck between floors in an elevator in the Chicago area on a business trip and I almost walked into the piece between the floors because I assumed that the door and floor were alinged. I had to play around with the floors and finally got the doors to open on the 2nd floor and jumped out and reported it to the hotel front desk who did not seem to care. Needless to say I took the stairs the rest of my stay there.

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Umm...guys...it is a manual elevator. That means she or someone else had to open the door. There are normally two doors on this type of elevator. The one that keeps closed when the elevator is not there or else the elevator will not operate, unless it is super old; which I am suspecting here, and the door to the elevator, which you manually have to open.

Both of these doors must be opened manually, there is not auto swith or anything. If you saw it on the news and worked in a warehouse, you know what I am talking about. Not the safest thing in the world, but this was just straight negligence. I feel bad for her, but this totally could have been avoided if she looked straight, or put down whatever the hell she was carrying to make sure the elevator was there. Whoever left the door open, well I bet they feel guilty as hell or she is bop'n herself in a better place.

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I sniff a conspiracy...

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"Not the safest thing in the world, but this was just straight negligence. I feel bad for her, but this totally could have been avoided if she looked straight, or put down whatever the hell she was carrying to make sure the elevator was there."

Bingo! I also feel very sorry for the woman; a stupid mistake and it costs you your life. But it could easily have been avoided with some literal 'foresight'.

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People go out onto crosswalks al the time without carefully looking, ...

Not I. I always check, both directions, even where it should be one-way traffic.

Actually, it is quite common for people used to riding elevators to imeadiately step forward into the elevator as soon as the doors open.

Yes, without waiting in case anyone wants to come out. I always check whether anyone's about to come out so I think (or hope) I would notice if for whatever reason the lift were absent.

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here's a solution, though a bit of an eyesore, it will save a lot of lives. paint all elevator car interiors green. paint the shafts red. if you see red, don't enter.

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They should review all of their elevators company wide and put strict safety measures to make sure you can't open the doors without the lift actually being there, its a simple trip circuit, and you could intergrate an 'OK to go' beacon and sounder.

But this won't happen obviously

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paint all elevator car interiors green. paint the shafts red. if you see red, don't enter.

moonbeams

I see, like a traffic light. In that case this is Japan so wouldn't the shaft be painted 'blue'?... ; )

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Smithinjapan; you make a lot of sense here. Thank you.

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@smithinjapan: I would of liked to keep it as simple as you did, but I felt I had to explain what manual elevators are like.

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The repair work was probably done only on paper to save the company money. A very unfortunate accident that should be investigated. It seems like negligence on the part of the company or shoddy repair work by whomever fixed the elevator. If the doors weren't supposed to open unless the elevator was there that says it all!

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