Published: Wed, November 21, 2018
Global News | By Blake Casey

Terror as Chicago skyscraper lift plunges 84 floors when cable snaps

Terror as Chicago skyscraper lift plunges 84 floors when cable snaps

Maña told the Chicago Tribune she noticed dust particles seeping into the elevator.

The rescue itself would take another several hours, the Chicago Tribune reported, as the vehicle was in a "blind shaft" for express elevators with few access points from outside that firefighters could use to even locate where it eventually stopped.

A passenger elevator in the building formerly known as the John Hancock Center, Chicago's fourth tallest structure, malfunctioned on Friday and sent six people speeding downward.

The unthinkable happened for six visitors to Chicago's fourth tallest skyscraper when a cable snapped, dropping them dozens of stories before becoming trapped in an elevator for almost three hours.

"I knew something wasn't OK", Castillo told the Chicago Tribune. Montemayor, who was visiting with his wife from Mexico City, said he and his wife held each other tightly and began to pray. No one was injured, but those inside had to wait hours for firefighters to break through a wall more than 10 stories above ground.

"It was a pretty precarious situation where the cables that broke were on top of the elevator", Chicago Fire Department Battalion Chief Patrick Maloney commented.

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Apparently one of the elevator's hoist ropes snapped.

The elevator, which became wedged between the 11th and 12th floors, was in a "blind shaft", meaning there were no doors through which firefighters could enter to rescue people.

All six trapped individuals would be rescued early Friday morning after the almost three hour ordeal when the firefighters cut through the wall to reach them, much to their relief.

'We don't like to have to go through walls unless it's absolutely necessary, ' Chicago Fire Department spokesman Larry Langford told the Tribune.

Found in parking garages and other tall buildings, these elevators travel express between floors - in a shaft constructed without openings in between. The elevator was last inspected for safety in July.

The elevator and the two next to it will be closed until the appropriate repairs are made.

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