A worried mom is speaking out and hoping to raise awareness around escalator safety after her 2-year-old son's leg became so badly stuck on an escalator that it broke.
Andrea Diaczok was preparing to fly back to Calgary, Canada with her husband, Jeff Lee, and their 2-year-old son, Julian, on Feb. 16 after visiting family in Vancouver, when their son's boot became stuck in an escalator at Vancouver International Airport, the Calgary Herald reports.
According to Diaczok, who is 22 weeks pregnant, the family was going down on an escalator when Julian's boot suddenly became stuck between the railing and the stairs about halfway down the escalator. The toddler's boot disappeared into the crevice, with the teeth of the stairs biting into his toe.
Unable to hit the emergency stop button, Diaczok began screaming for help. The two-year-old was dragged nearly to the bottom of the escalator before somebody was able to press the emergency stop.
"It twisted his leg around and broke his leg, and then the entire foot of the boot disappeared in the side of the escalator," she said. "I didn't even know if his foot was there…I didn't know if there's only a stump there at this point."
It took the help of bystanders, airport employees and a pair of scissors to finally free Julian's foot from the escalator. Julian suffered a broken leg, cuts, and bruises, but Diaczok is considering him lucky, knowing that it could have been worse.
"He's good but I would say he's lucky. I can imagine a bare foot and a little foam flip-flop. Yes, his boot got stuck, but it also gave him a little bit of protection," she said, adding that she's taught her son about escalator safety. "He hops at the top, he hops at the bottom. We make a game of it, 'don't touch this part, always step over.' But I've never heard of (getting stuck) in the sides."
Julian is currently at home recovering.
A spokesperson for the Vancouver International Airport, Jody Armstrong, says that the incident is being investigated.