Each day, millions of Americans step into their homes, offices, garages, and shopping centers, people are faced with one of two options: elevator, or stairs. Particularly since the covid virus outbreak, many around the world have become sedentary. Those that would have opted for the stairs before and more likely now to take the elevator simply due to inactivity. The choice to take the stairs is a choice of health. Your blood circulates, you breath deeper, and your muscles are woken from slumber. However, choosing to take the steps can prevent injury and long-term physical harm in other ways as well. Every year, per the US Bureau of Labor Statistics, there are at least 30 people killed in elevator accidents – thousands more are injured.
Elevators, although regulated and hopefully kept to safety code, are still susceptible to human error and malfunction. Elevator accidents are tragic and unexpected. Should you or a loved one be injured by an elevator malfunction, you need an experienced personal injury attorney at your side.
Elevators are expected to be maintained and properly inspected by the property owner. Malls generally set up a set schedule for service. Apartment buildings usually hire superintendents that live on the premises. Along with maintaining the dignity and cleanliness of the property, they are required to ensure elevators function properly for tenants. In hotels, porters are often designated this responsibility. Despite whoever is delegated the daily maintenance, all liability falls on the insurance of the owner/title holder.
There are a variety of ways that an elevator system may malfunction. The sensors on the doors may lose their sensitivity, closing on passengers entering or exiting. This is especially dangerous for the elderly or those on crutches. An unexpected closing metal door can easily knock someone off balance, causing substantial physical injury. Other times, the pulley system may fail, creating a misalignment between the base of the elevator and the floor it opens up to. If the elevator is raised, the passenger may stub their toe, setting them off balance into a fall. If the elevator floor is too low, an unsuspecting person may step in and lose their balance.
Additionally, if the elevator has faulty wiring, there could be even more extreme consequences. Elevators may engage on their own, while passengers are in the doorway. Hands or other extremities may be caught and crushed. If you or a loved one has been injured in an elevator accident, contact a Personal Injury Lawyer in White Plains NY, like The Law Offices of Francis X Young PLLC. Your attorney will research the incident and fight for your right to compensation. If the owner is found negligent in the maintenance or operation of the elevator, your medical bills may be fully covered.