ON APRIL 17, Slovak police freed a Czech national who had been stuck in a broken elevator in the town of Oščadnica in northern Slovakia for almost two days. The blocked elevator’s alarm signal was not working, and the complex where the man was staying was empty at the time, as it is mostly used for ski vacations in the winter season.
The man had just wanted to get some things from his car, so he left his apartment without his mobile phone, the daily Nový Čas wrote. After the elevator jammed, he tried to walk, sit, and think of his family. During the night he even tried to sleep, although he woke repeatedly. When fighting to get free, he managed to make a tiny gap between the elevator and the wall, through which air could pass and through which he was able to urinate (though after doing so, smoke emerged from the shaft, but later stopped). After a day and a half, he felt himself becoming dehydrated and after two days, he said his fatigue became unbearable.
The man, identified as Stanislav Skalička (47) from Moravia, was rescued after 46 hours in the elevator. When he did not call his family they contacted Czech police, who – having found out that he was supposed to be staying in Slovakia – notified the Slovak police, the ČTK newswire was told by Žilina police spokesperson Jana Balogová. The recently built complex has a phone in the elevator for cases of emergency, but the construction company had insufficient funds to operate a rescue system, so the phone was not activated.