• Kyodo


A man was trapped for 40 minutes Friday night in a Schindler elevator in the building that houses the Swiss elevator manufacturer’s branch office in Sendai, police said.

The man, 25, entered the elevator on the sixth floor where he lives to descend. After the doors closed and he pressed a floor button, the power went off and the elevator stopped, the police said.

A friend who was expecting him at the entrance of the nine-story building got worried when he did not show up. He went to the sixth floor and found the man locked inside the elevator.

Firefighters pried open the doors to free him. The man complained of slight nausea and was taken to a hospital for an examination. He was unhurt and returned home.

The building in Aoba Ward contains both offices and residences. Schindler Elevator is on the third floor.

A resident said there have been several incidents in which the elevator has failed to stop at the right spot.

A note was posted on the elevator to the effect that the model was different from the one involved in a fatal accident in Tokyo on June 3 and that it was safe to use because it was serviced regularly.

A Schindler Elevator employee said Saturday the incident was being investigated.

The world’s second-largest elevator maker has been mired in a string of mishaps in Japan, including an accident that killed a teenage boy in Tokyo last month.

Although company executive Ronald Hess apologized June 13 over the death, the public has been angry about his belated visit, which came several days after the fatal accident.

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