How To: Get Out Of A Locked Room

published Oct 23, 2009
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(Image credit: Apartment Therapy)

While we were working with a client this week at their shop, we pretty much got locked in the bathroom. Yep, definitely a first! The doorknob came loose, wouldn’t catch the door release and 30 minutes and a non-emergency call to the fire department later, we now know some tips for handling this type of crazy situation.

1) Try to stay calm. While it is quite a strange feeling to be stuck in a small space, relax and stay calm.

2) Check to see if there are any other exits – maybe a window? Usually in smaller rooms the only exit is the one that is probably stuck. There actually was a window in the room we were in but there were iron bars on the outside, which is pretty typical in Los Angeles.

3) Call out to get the attention of anyone nearby. Fortunately, there was another person around who was able to help us get out.

4) If no one is around, make some noise with an object.

5) Try using a credit card or thin plastic object. Slide the card inbetween the door and bend it the opposite way, forcing the lock to go back. Try leaning against the door while doing this, which will help it to pop open.

6) Try to unscrew the door knob and take it off completely. Inside, you’ll see a square hole. If you can get something in that and turn it, the door should release.

7) If you are still stuck and there is someone to help, ask them to make a non-emergency call to your local fire department and they will come help you out, like Captain Rex. (They might even make you go back in the bathroom and show you how to get out next time on your own. Thank you, Captain Rex!!!)

Have you ever been stuck in a room? Share your story with us.

Check out more helpful hints from Apartment Therapy: