December 30, 2007
EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. (AP) -- Three people remained hospitalized Sunday after being injured when an escalator malfunctioned Saturday night at Giants Stadium after the Patriots' 38-35 victory over the Giants gave New England a 16-0 regular season.
The escalator at Gate A apparently failed at the bottom steps, state police Lt. Jim Crann said. The escalator runs from the stadium's upper tier to the ground level, and Crann said it appeared that some bottom steps became bent, causing some fans to sustain foot and leg injuries.
Seven people were injured, according to James Minish, executive vice president of facilities for the New Jersey Sports & Exposition Authority, which operates the stadium. Two of the seven were treated at the stadium, he said.
Five people were taken to Hackensack University Medical Center after the game, according to hospital spokeswoman Nancy Radwin.
Two of the five were treated and released and the other three were still hospitalized Sunday afternoon. Radwin declined to give specific details on their conditions, citing hospital policy.
One of the injured fans appeared to have a fractured leg, Minish said, while others had scrapes and bruises.
"The elevator apparently started running fast" Minish said, adding that all of the stadium's escalators were turned off after the incident.
The accident was similar to one that occurred in July 2003 at Denver's Coors Field. A descending escalator suddenly sped up after a Colorado Rockies game, throwing fans into a pile. Dozens of people were injured, and some needed surgery.
At Giants Stadium on Sunday, the escalator to the upper tier was blocked off, forcing fans going to the New York Jets-Kansas City Chiefs game to take an escalator from ground level to the mezzanine and then walk to the upper tier.
Minish said the escalators were scheduled to be checked Monday by state inspectors under the auspices of the Department of Community Affairs.
AP Sports Writer Dennis Waszak contributed to this story.