This is something that bugs me to some minor degree on a daily basis, but today, it was bad enough to compel me to write about it!
Those of you who take BART regularly know that people who are in a hurry or just like to walk faster, take the left side of the escalator and stairs, and those who can't walk fast, prefer to stand as the escalator moves, or just have plenty of time to spare, are supposed to take the right side of the escalator or stairs. Common courtesy, widely-accepted by most daily commuters, or at least, it should be.
Well...this scenario I'm about to describe actually apply to people who are more often on the left side, people who like to move more quickly. Do you ever notice the tendency for some escalator riders to suddenly stop walking down along the downward movement of the (down) escalator, just about 5 steps away from the platform? I know it's just 5 steps until we have no more steps to walk down, but just let the movement carry you to your final step...why suddenly stop walking down and put a sudden halt to the 15 people walking behind you to the same speed/downward rhythm? Instead, these people stops walking all of a sudden as we are about 5 to 6 steps away from the lower platform, as if they are scared or hesitant to take the last few steps as the down escalator diminishes. Or, maybe they forget that there is an endless line of people walking down behind them like robots who are not prepared to suddenly stop their bodies from moving (or falling) forward.
Today, I was in the middle of a domino effect that ended badly with a few people on the ground. Luckily, I was about 7 people away from the source of the problem, so I had the time to quickly step aside to avoid a tumble. Everyone was walking down the escalator in a steady pace when this woman decides that she is too close to the end of the escalator steps and must stop. The man behind her, naturally not prepared for this red light, walks right into her, while the woman behind him, walks into him and pushing the first woman down on her knees. At this point, the woman was blocking the entire escalator exit to the platform, causing everyone on their way down to either step into the man and woman #2 already on the ground and join them, or to piss off the escalator riders on the right side by forcefully invade their territory in order to maintain their balance.
It was a big mess!!! There were 3 people on the ground, and many squeezed awkwardly on the right side trying to avoid becoming part of the tumble. As this was happening, a Dublin/Pleasanton train comes and goes. (Luckily, not my train!)
Why? Tell me why must someone stop their walk down the escalator before the steps actually end? I know this scenario is impossible to picture if you don't know what I'm talking about, but my goodness, I've always hate being stuck in back of people like that because usually, my train's door is wide open while they decide to halt their speed, and by the time I actually get down to the platform, the train is gone!!!!