Millions of sports fans safely ride escalators to and from their seating levels in stadiums and arenas each year, but Saturday brought a reminder of what can go wrong with this mode of conveyances. After a Flyers win in Philadelphia's Wells Fargo Center, an escalator loaded with fans suddenly sped up, causing several individuals to be hurled to the floor. At least one fan was witnessed leaping over the railing to avoid the pileup.

 

 

Escalator got a little excited about the flyers win too...#flyers #philadelphia

Posted by Meghan McGreevy on Saturday, April 2, 2016

 

No serious injuries were reported, but more than one fan could be seen leaving the scene in wheelchairs provided by the arena.

It's been a while since Athletic Business visited the issue of escalator failure in sports venues. Between 2000 and 2006, four accidents involving escalators prompted AB to publish this article. There have been serious injuries, fatalities, lawsuits, inspections and upgrades — and in some cases, changes in policy regarding operation (using escalators only in one direction, for example, or shutting them down completely before games end).

The faulty escalator at Wells Fargo Center was immediately closed after Saturday's accident and remained off limits for a 76ers game later that night.

"Immediately following Saturday's game an incident did occur involving one of our escalators. We immediately closed it down to protect our patrons and notified the operator," said Ike Richman, spokesman for arena owner Comcast Spectacor. "We are working with the operator on investigating this incident."
 
No word as to whether the escalator was fixed in time for last night's Rihanna concert, as was the stated goal. AB's efforts to reach Comcast Spectacor were not immediately successful.

Paul Steinbach is Senior Editor of Athletic Business.