Between Seoul Metro Doors

I was on my way back home, heading to my train. It was during rush hour, and the station was crowded. While walking toward my usual waiting spot (I always like to minimize walking distance to stairs after getting off. Who doesn’t?), I saw a young couple running toward train.

At the moment I saw them, I knew it was a bad idea. Obviously they were trying to make it just before the doors closed.
The girl went inside just fine, but the guy was a little too big and slow. Yup, a huge guy stuck between train doors.

Many people around him were watching him in horror. But, for me, before worrying signal hit neuron in my brain, my laughing signal got there first.

Yes I’m a bad person. I was secretly laughing, looking at this miserable guy stuck between doors.
I blame him. The way he got stuck was a kind of funny. The more he struggled, the funnier it got…

You see, there is a very fine line between comedy and tragedy.

After having a good laugh (sorry) and silent utterance of told-you-so (and of course, making sure the guy was OK), I started wondering how dangerous it could be.
Maybe they can design so that when something got stuck, doors can reopen automatically, just like elevator.
But, I did see some people “holding” doors for friends to come. New automatic reopen feature could be taken advantage. Maybe not.

Maybe it was because my mind was occupied by how we can build a better safety system, or maybe it was just a small punishment from God of Metro for laughing at that miserable guy.

Yes, about five minutes later, I found myself stuck between doors.

I can tell you one thing for sure. It was not funny being caught between train doors. Not at all.

My first thought went to how powerful the doors were. It felt like being attacked by alligator, only without fang (thank God).
My right arm, leg and my shoulder bag got caught, and I wasn’t getting away that easily.
It took me maybe five seconds to finally free myself.

Five seconds is pretty long in that situation, with all eyes on me.

So, what did I learn?

First of all, never risk yourself running toward closing train doors. It’s stupid, and pretty embarrassing if you get caught.

Second of all, do not laugh at people who got stuck between train doors. Karma will get you.

And finally, I learned that Seoul train system wasn’t that dangerous after all.
There are two layers of doors; train doors and platform doors.
It looks like platform doors only close if train doors are completely closed.

Or, at least, for five seconds. After that, perhaps all you can do is to pray.