10 people hospitalized after escalator reverses in San Antonio

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by Dillon Collier & Kens5.com Staff

khou.com

Posted on May 15, 2013 at 6:20 PM

Updated Thursday, Dec 5 at 1:29 PM

SAN ANTONIO -- Ten people were hospitalized and even more were injured after an escalator stopped and changed directions at the Henry B. Gonzalez Center on Wednesday afternoon, according to convention center officials.

Convention center spokeswoman Andrea Delaune said the degree of injuries varied from serious to moderate. She said several others were treated for minor injuries.

According to a KENS 5 viewer who sent a photo of the aftermath, more than 20 people tumbled on top of one another when the escalator they were riding stopped and changed directions just before 1 p.m.

Minutes after the accident, a San Antonio police officer quickly ushered a KENS 5 reporter out of the main hall and into the executive boardroom, where convention center staff later briefed the media.

The injured included visitors in town for a DISH Network work summit who had just finished eating lunch.

More than 2,500 DISH Network employees are staying at the convention center, although DISH Network representatives declined to comment on the escalator accident.

This isn't the first escalator mishap at the downtown convention center.

Delaune said the same escalator malfunctioned last August and sent crowds tumbling, although not as many people were injured. The injured included visitors in town for a GameStop expo.

Delaune said they aren't sure what is wrong with the escalator but are investigating.

Convention center staff blocked off the escalator and cleaned the area after all the victims had been cleared. It remained shut down.

The San Antonio Fire Department sent at least 14 units to the Henry B. Gonzalez Convention Center, located at 200 E. Market St., around 12:52 a.m., according to the department's active call list.
 

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