Commuters received a scare Monday morning when a crowded PATH station escalator malfunctioned, injuring four people.

The incident occurred at Exchange Place in Jersey City around 9AM when an up escalator suddenly became a fast-moving down escalator, throwing its hapless passengers into a panic. A PATH train rider described to Gothamist:

Well this morning I’m about 2/3rs of the way up the escalator (and anyone familiar with it knows it is a LONG escalator) - when suddenly the escalator stops and starts moving in reverse. And then it starts picking up speed, until its moving backwards at an incredibly high rate of speed. Faster than I ever thought an escalator could move. Suddenly there are about 20 to 30 people piled up at the bottom of the escalator because people couldn’t get out of the way fast enough.

The extent of the injuries was unavailable but Port Authority spokesperson Ron Marsico said, "Fortunately none of the injuries are life-threatening."

Marisco said the cause of the malfunction was not known at this time.


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