Growing up, many of us have been told to be careful while riding escalators.
A toddler whose foot got caught in an escalator at VivoCity on Sunday (Sept 13), once again emphasises the importance of this advice.
The incident was caught on camera and shared on TikTok by user @wonraekang0523. A boy and two adults — presumably his parents — were seen in the footage.PHOTO: Screengrab/TikTok/wonraekang0523
In a clip, the couple were seen sitting on the steps of the stationary escalator as they comforted their three-year-old son. Singapore Civil Defence Force (SCDF) personnel soon arrived to free the trapped boy.
SCDF said they were alerted to the incident at level 1 of VivoCity Mall at around 2.20pm that day.PHOTO: Screengrab/TikTok/wonraekang0523
Here’s a closer view of the situation according to footage from TikTok user @ellahmhaypasigon.PHOTO: Screengrab/TikTok/ellahmhaypasigon
The SCDF team assessed the situation and used a hydraulic rescue tool to free the boy's foot which was trapped in the escalator.PHOTO: Instagram/sgfollowsall
The toddler was later taken to the National University Hospital for treatment.
Another clip of the incident was shared on Instagram account @sgfollowsall, garnering quite a few reactions from the public.
While it is unclear how the boy had gotten his foot trapped in the escalator, some netizens shared that they have been through similar experiences, and advised others not to play with the sides of the escalator.PHOTO: Screengrab/Instagram
Parents with baby strollers and young children should take the elevator instead of using the escalator, one Instagram user advised.PHOTO: Screengrab/InstagramPHOTO: Screengrab/Instagram
Some netizens, however, attributed the cause of the incident to the child wearing crocs footwear.PHOTO: Screengrab/InstagramPHOTO: Screengrab/Instagram
Ultimately, the best way to prevent such incidents from taking place is to educate ourselves and others about child safety practices when out and about.
Tips to ensure your child’s safety when away from home
- Always be aware of your surroundings, and be alert to what your child is doing. Some, if not many of us love taking selfies with our little ones especially when outdoors. But a moving escalator is not the place for this.
- Similarly, any place that is high up and where the railing ends at an adult’s waist-level is unsafe while carrying a baby especially. Babies are wriggly, and can easily slip out of your arms in a split second if you are distracted.
- Likewise, toddlers and young children are small enough to slip through fence railings, for example, those at scenic locations.
- Do not allow children to play near escalators, travellators (in airports, for example) or lifts.
- Instruct older children to stand in the middle of escalator steps. Hold their hand until they step off.
- Do not take strollers up or down escalators. Use the lift instead.
- If you are at a mall with older kids, instruct them about what to do should they find themselves lost. They could go to the lobby, or inform a security officer, for example. Get them to memorise your phone number, or note it down on a lanyard where they can carry at all times.
- If your helper or a caregiver takes your children out often, help them understand how important it is to always keep their attention on your kids. Not on their phones.
This article was first published in theAsianparent.