Division of Labor and Industry


Maryland Escalators: Steps to Safety on Escalators - Elevator and Escalator Safety - Safety Inspections


Escalator brochure (Word document, download Word viewer for free)


Due to concerns about accidental deaths and serious injuries that have occurred on escalators, these safety tips are provided.

CHECK that there are no loose strings, scarves, belts, skirts, or coats that can get caught in the sides or grooves of the steps.

STAND in the center of the step with your feet slightly apart. Do not walk up or down the escalator. You could trip!

HOLD the handrail in order to maintain balance in the event of a sudden stop.

STEP OVER the comb-plate when exiting. Shoes, especially soft-soled shoes, can get caught between the step tread and the comb-plate.

Escalators are equipped with safety stop measures to help protect users. Built-in safety stop switches will stop the escalator if something gets wedged. In an emergency, safety stop buttons, located at both the top and bottom of the escalator, can also be used.

Hold Handrail
Attend Children
Avoid Sides

  • Step on and off with care, and take extra care if you wear bifocals.
  • Always stand facing forward.
  • Never bring strollers, walkers or carts of any type on an escalator.
  • Pay close attention and attend to small children.
  • Hold onto the handrails and avoid the sides under the rail.
  • Move quickly and away from exit areas. 
  • Never walk on a escalator that is not moving.


IF your hands are full
IF you have poor eyesight
IF you have a child in a stroller
IF you use a wheelchair
IF you use a delivery hand-truck
IF you have any doubts


HOLD a child's hand or carry the child in one arm. Always hold onto the handrail with your other hand.
KEEP children away from the sides of an escalator. Make sure children stand in the middle of the steps to minimize the chances of fingers and shoes getting caught. A child's foot can easily get caught between the moving step and the sides of the escalator.
HELP a child on and off the escalator.
KEEP children's hands off moving stairs.
ALWAYS supervise children while riding on the escalator.

DO NOT USE A STROLLER or any other wheeled vehicle. They could tip over or become jammed in the entrance or exit.


Escalators are certainly a convenience, but used improperly they can be hazardous, causing unnecessary injuries.

Even with a stringent elevator and escalator safety inspection programs, Maryland is not without accidents. Although our accident rate is low, accidents do occur. Some accidents cause serious injury - even death.


If you see an escalator (or elevator) that does not appear safe, or one on which an accident has occurred, call the Elevator/Escalator Safety Inspection Unit of the Division of Labor and Industry. Call (410) 767-2350.


Supervise children and stay clear of the pinch areas. Step over the comb plate on or off the escalator.


For additional information, contact:
Division of Labor and Industry
Elevator and Escalator Safety

1100 N. Eutaw Street - Room 601
Baltimore, MD 21201
Fax: 410-333-7721
e-mail: dldlisafetyinspection-dllr@maryland.gov

Emergency telephone number: 410-767-2990