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PIA Press Release
2008/08/29

DTI cautions rubber clog wearers: Beware of escalator entrapments

Cagayan de Oro City (29 August) -- IN response to the incidences of consumers, particularly kids getting their toes caught in escalators because of wearing rubber clogs, the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) through the Bureau of Trade Regulation and Consumer Protection (DTI-BTRCP) held a consultative meeting with the officials of Crocs Philippines.

"Although it is yet to be determined whether these rubber clogs were the cause of unintentional risks to wearers, it is on the side of caution that we have called the attention of the distributor of Crocs to relay complaints forwarded to the DTI regarding injuries sustained especially by children," said Undersecretary for Consumer Welfare Zenaida Cuison Maglaya.

Crocs is a popular brand of footwear made of Closed Cell Resin (PCCR), a versatile material developed for maximum cushioning. The comfort, bold colors and the unique design make it popular especially to kids.

Officials from All Conditions Gear Philippines Incorporated, local distributor of Crocs, attended the meeting and committed to provide corresponding advisory and tips reminding consumers to be extra careful in using Crocs shoes in accident-prone places, particularly when on an escalator.

Moreover, they also volunteered to post safety hangtags and labels in their stores to guide and educate the consuming public.

Meanwhile, DTI-BTRCP warns rubber clog wearers to exercise caution, especially when riding escalators.

Recently, safety groups in the United States and Japan have issued warnings about soft-sided flexible clogs that pose safety hazards to escalator riders. Typically, the shoe becomes entrapped when the rider is stepping on or off the escalator or stands too close to the sidewalls.

The US Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) reported that 77 escalator entrapment incidents have been reported since January 2006, half of which resulted in injury; and the Trade Ministry of Japan received 65 complaints on Crocs being stuck in escalators between June and November last year. Most of these cases involved young children.

With this, DTI offers precautionary tips to assist parents in educating their children about escalator safety:

  • Before climbing aboard, find out where emergency shutoff buttons are in case there is a need to stop the escalator. The buttons are usually at the top and bottom of each escalator and can be used to stop it in case of an emergency.

  • To avoid the sides of steps where entrapment usually occur, stand in the middle of the step. Always face forward and hold on to handrail.

  • Step over the comb plate. Always pick up your feet and step carefully on or off the escalator. Never drag or slide your feet off the edge.

  • Stay clear of moving parts. Keep your hands, feet and clothing clear of the side panels of the escalator. Remember: loose shoe laces, rubber boots and baggy clothes can get caught in the moving parts of the escalator. Make sure you have no dangling clothing or loose shoelaces that could get caught.

  • Always hold children's hands on escalators and do not permit children to sit or play on the steps.

  • Do not bring children onto escalators in strollers, walkers or carts.

  • Stand upright. Never lean on the side of the escalator, sit on the stairs or ride on handrails.

  • Exit promptly from the escalator. Never stop, stand or play at the landing; this can cause a dangerous pileup. (DTI-10 Communicators/PIA-MisOrOccCam i-Net) [top]
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