Tourists in tears from Burj Khalifa elevator drama
Visitors to the Burj Khalifa have told how they were “upset and scared” after a technical fault with the elevator left them stranded on the 124th floor over the weekend.
“I was walking around the observation deck when I heard this really loud noise and what looked like smoke or dust coming out from one of the elevator doors,” Michael Timms, 31, telecom engineer from the US, told Gulf News.
Tourists told the paper how people started crying after being stranded for more than an hour.
"There were at least 60 people on the deck at the time. Employees and security staff were telling people that everything was ok. But once it became clear we were not being allowed back down, some people got really angry while others started crying," Timms told the paper.
"Civil Defence, paramedics and the police all arrived on the scene. One of the elevators had not reached all the way to the 124th floor and I saw some people climbing a ladder from the elevator up on to the observation deck,” he told the paper.
"We eventually managed to get down to ground level via the service elevator. At the bottom, we were given water and offered refunds or the chance to return for free on another occasion. But there was a big lack of communication throughout the whole ordeal and it has certainly put me off going back up or taking visiting friends and family.”
Michele Mofcato, a 29-year-old tourist from the US, told Gulf News: "I was pretty calm at first but as time went by I began to get really upset; it was pretty scary being stranded 124 floors above ground level."
The building’s observation deck, At the Top, was closed temporarily for “maintenance and upgrade”, officials said on Sunday. It is set to open again on February 14 – Valentine’s Day.
The official told Gulf News: "This is a minor case; it was not serious at all. Staff members at the Burj Khalifa handled the situation perfectly. Our role was to ensure the safety of the public. It is absolutely normal for a new building to face minor issues such as this, which involved one of the Burj Khalifa’s elevators."
According to the report, fourteen people were trapped in one of the Burj Khalifa’s elevators for over an hour last month.