The Enigmatic World-Record-Breaking Escalator

Running faithfully for over 20 years in an unobtrusive and nondescript corner of an average shopping centre in Kawasaki, this world-record-breaking escalator is used by hundreds of people each day.


Yes, certified by the Guinness Book Of Records, this little strip of moving stairs saves people an exhausting downward climb of 834mm – a vertical drop of less than 4 steps – officially the world’s shortest drop!

Is this really necessary, one wonders?

But there’s one more thing which confuses the issue even further and in fact renders the entire installation completely pointless – just take a look at what’s at the bottom of the escalator…

It’s a truly puzzling thing – one wonders why the escalator was ever installed.

Fascinating to watch it in use though, as rather than continue their stride and walk down the escalator (which would require a mere 2 or 3 paces), the vast majority of users actually stopped to stand on it, thereby dramatically reducing their speed for a duration of all of 3 seconds!

And here’s how it looks from a user’s point of view…

~ by JapanGasm on 26 May, 2010.

5 Responses to “The Enigmatic World-Record-Breaking Escalator”

  1. That’s funny. When I was living in Shimonoseki, the capital for fugu (blowfish), I found a Guinness Record sign too. It was for the largest serving plate for raw fugu. Could serve 1000 people or something like that. Pretty crazy! Thanks for sharing!
    – Intrepidity

    • A fugu plate? A strange idea indeed. “world’s largest plate of potential death!” You really have to wonder whether people are just aiming for publicity rather than making something vaguely useful. Any links?

  2. This is so hilarious. It totally surprised me. Behold the hobbit escalator!

  3. […] not quite as extreme as this world-record breaker, a ridiculous 6-step escalator at the Shinkansen (bullet train) entrance of Tokyo Station is […]

  4. That’s hilarious! And the fact that it ushers the walker directly to a set of steps makes this the most pointless escalator imaginable. I wonder too what the thinking and history is of its installation.

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