Half a croissant, on a plate, with a sign in front of it saying '50c'
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Tank Tread Lifesaver

A crude technology turned 90 degrees left (or right)
  [vote for,

Imagining fire escape devices, a slowly moving ladder would not be as fast as a slide, but it would avoid a few perilous details of having a slide: People hitting each other entering from different levels, going at different speeds, and the ejection of people. A slowly rotating ladder (imagine a tank tread, turned tall-ways) which people could climb onto and just hold on to a particular wrung while the entire thing slowly rotates downward on the outside. How to get them to let go at the bottom (as certainly a great many will be stuck and unable to let go due to the shear shock of the situation), I am thinking maybe shocking them, but then that might make them hold on tighter. I would have a decent section that goes horizontal so that if a person is holding on, the would be in a lying-down position, and more prone to letting go.
twitch, Sep 19 2017

Man engine https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Man_engine
Mentioned in my anno [notexactly, Feb 04 2018]

Paternoster https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Paternoster
Mentioned in my anno [notexactly, Feb 04 2018]

Belt manlift https://en.wikipedi...g/wiki/Belt_manlift
Mentioned in my anno [notexactly, Feb 06 2018]


       Sp. Sheer shock.   

       If it were shear shock, I'd worry about their fingers.
pertinax, Sep 19 2017

       // How to get them to let go at the bottom //   

       Just have a rubber "scraper blade " above an angled, padded chute that deflects the rider off to the side.   

       This is basically an "outside " version of a paternoster lift.
8th of 7, Sep 19 2017

       Use metal rungs, with electrical contacts at the bottom of the ladder to deliver a shock to anyone who holds on for too long.   

       (Don't use DC - they might not be able to let go.)
Wrongfellow, Sep 20 2017

       What if they're paralyzed, infirm, or just too wimpy to hang on?
RayfordSteele, Sep 20 2017

       Natural selection happens, RayfordSteele, Natural selection.   

       And as for how to tell them to get off.. I think some lights and a recording would do fine.
twitch, Sep 20 2017

       And so they fall off, taking out half of everybody below them.
RayfordSteele, Sep 20 2017

       Anemone-like sticky suckers ? Blood to your head is relaxing under panic.
wjt, Sep 21 2017

       If the device is inclined at 70° to the horizontal, users can effectively lie on the slowly descending upper surface. Handles will be useful, but are probably more for reassurance than utility.   

       When the user reaches its lowest point, gravity will encourage them to descend the short distance onto an inflated crash mat. Those inclined to hang on will find themselves hanging from an inverted surface, and can be safely removed by a low-pressure high-volume water jet.
8th of 7, Sep 21 2017

       Sounds like fun.
RayfordSteele, Sep 21 2017

       This sounds like something between a man engine and a paternoster [links].
notexactly, Feb 04 2018

       // a man engine //   

       Fine until a pinion shaft fractures. After that, not so much.
8th of 7, Feb 04 2018

       I found something even closer: the belt manlift! [link]   

       Unfortunately, this means that the women and children will still have to be rescued by traditional means, and the men will have to wait for that to be done before escaping more rapidly, so it won't help that much.
notexactly, Feb 06 2018


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