What Happens To An Overcrowded Elevator in the Tropicana, AC

It goes into “Safety Mode” and plunges 14 floors to the bottom:

ATLANTIC CITY – Ever wonder what happens when an elevator surpasses its “maximum occupancy”?

A group of guests at Tropicana Casino and Resort found out early Sunday morning.

Jackie Dufner, 21, who was visiting from Monroe Township, Middlesex County, said she and a few friends had just gotten on the elevator at about 1:30 a.m. Sunday when “the doors shut and we fell.”

She estimated there were about 15 people in the elevator when she and about five friends from a larger group got on at the 34th floor of the hotel’s West Tower.

“We all flew up in the air and banged down really hard to the ground,” Dufner recalled.

She ended up with a sprained left ankle. Another girl broke her leg, Dufner said.

But the elevator did what it was supposed to do, according to a statement from manufacturer, Otis. The maximum capacity is 12 people, or about 3,000 pounds. Surveillance tape shows about 20 people in the car, Tropicana spokeswoman Diane Spiers

The elevator “went into safety mode and descended to the bottom,” she said.

It took about 18 seconds for the elevator to go 14 floors to the ground, Spiers said. The group was on the 34th floor, but the bottom level is actually the 20th floor, she explained.

“I had enough time in my head to say, ‘Are we really falling?'” Dufner said.

It then took about 20 to 30 minutes for maintenance workers to pry open the doors, she added: “We didn’t know if we were like hanging or we were on the floor.”

Spiers confirmed it took about 20 minutes before the doors were opened.

The Abandoned Sinai Hotels

From Bldgblog:

Vienna’s excellent Architekturzentrum will be hosting a new photography show, opening this Wednesday, April 24, called Sinai Hotels.
With images by Sabine Haubitz and Stefanie Zoche of Haubitz+Zoche, the show looks at “the concrete skeletons of five-star hotel complexes” abandoned on Egypt’s Sinai Peninsula.
They are resorts that never quite happened, then, with names like Sultan’s Palace and the Magic Life Imperial. This makes them “monuments to failed investment.”

(via Kottke)