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Emergency Slide

A quicker way out of high-rises in an emergency
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On the way to work today I was hearing that it took the people at the top of the World Trade Center more than an hour to descend all those stairs. Perhaps stairs could be converted in emergencies to slides, or perhaps there could be a special slide running parallel to the stairwell that is for use only in emergencies. To prevent blisters and/or acceleration to unsafe speeds, the slide could require you to get off every so often, or there could be gunnysacks like there are on those big slides they have at fairs. They probably ought to be padded as well as fireproof in some way. Maybe it could be outside the building, like a fire escape.
arghblah, Sep 13 2001

Urban jungle gym http://www.halfbake...an_20jungle_20(gym)
if the city was like this there'd be no problem... [futurebird, Sep 13 2001, last modified Oct 05 2004]

emergency exit http://www.halfbake...ea/emergency_20exit
[egnor, Sep 13 2001, last modified Oct 05 2004]

Emergency Exit: The Quickening http://www.halfbake..._20The_20Quickening
[egnor, Sep 13 2001, last modified Oct 05 2004]

History of escape chutes http://escape_chute...chute_reference.htm
irgeek's link as a link [krelnik, Oct 04 2004, last modified Oct 05 2004]

Building escape links http://alum.mit.edu...uilding-escape.html
Weird working systems and other ideas [beland, Oct 04 2004, last modified Oct 05 2004]

[link]






       If the slides will be on the outside then maybe skyscrapers need moats deep enough for people to fall into in case of a mishap. However, given the height of some skyscrapers, these moats might have to be pretty deep.
Aristotle, Sep 13 2001
  

       Well, it could perhaps be covered entirely to prevent people from falling out ... though that would not help if for some reason the slide became unsafe. I don't think a moat of any depth would save people who hit the water after a certain height -- I forget where you reach maximum velocity in this gravity, but I think it's after six or seven seconds of freefall. Maybe parachutes are the answer.
arghblah, Sep 13 2001
  

       plane style inflating slides (may need alteration to design to cope with height)   

       it was terrible to see the people on the top floors waving for help and knowing that no-one could possibly reach them
chud, Sep 13 2001
  

       U could have an emergency slide in the stairwells, maybe inflatable for ease of storage. The worlds biggest helta skeltar and safe tooo.
edski, Sep 13 2001
  

       FIREPOLES. It works for strippers and firemen, so why not everyone?
AfroAssault, Sep 14 2001
  

       arghblah: Prehaps the moat would have to be filled with custard ...
Aristotle, Sep 14 2001
  

       AfroAssault: Firemen don't slide down more than ten feet. 110+ stories at 15-20 feet apiece is a hell of a long way.   

       Besides, think of the chafing between the poor strippers' assets...
StarChaser, Sep 17 2001
  

       Yeah, KY is actually a firepole lubricant, not a vaginal one.
AfroAssault, Sep 19 2001
  

       But seriously, Maybe some inflateable chutes (like on planes see chuds annotate above) could be mounted on 3 floor (and below) windows to allow faster egress by dispersion of evacuants from the 3rd story down, rather than just the ground floor. Also such chutes would take people further away from the base of the building more quickly.
Zircon, Jan 27 2002
  

       Baked... Sort of. The emergency escape system on the Space Shuttle launch gantry tower is something similar.
kschang, Jan 29 2002
  

       why didn't anyone think of this before?
subkat, Jan 14 2003
  

       "why didn't anyone think of this before?"   

       They did. A long time ago in fact. Escape slides were tested as early as 1920.   

       http://escape_chute.freewwwtools.org/escape_chute_reference.htm
irgeek, Apr 24 2003
  

       Please use the link function for URLs. I did this one for you.
krelnik, Apr 24 2003
  

       That firepole will probably sway a lot if it's only attached to the ground and the top of the building.   

       If you're going to make the emergency stairs flatten into a slide, leave the inside half of the stairs solid so the firemen can get up.   

       Also, keep parachutes up top.
flyfast, May 15 2003
  
      
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