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Common Reasons for Elevator and Escalator Accidents and Injuries

Throughout the State of New York there are a seemingly endless number of elevators and escalators that facilitate the movement of people up and down buildings, subways, and residential properties. Both state and federal laws exist to try and ensure that these elevators and escalators are properly designed, manufactured, and maintained. Despite these laws, elevator and escalator accidents happen on a regular basis. As the victim, or surviving family member, of one of these accidents you could be entitled to compensation for your injuries or your loss. Only an experienced New York personal injury attorney can evaluate the unique facts and circumstances of your case and advise you accordingly; however, a better understanding of some of the more common reasons for elevator accidents and injuries may also be beneficial.

During the course of a single day in New York City an elevator or escalator could easily carry thousands of people to their destination. Occupants of an elevator in the Big Apple are frequently climbing to the top of a high rise building, making safety even more important. With that in mind, numerous laws exist that regulate how an elevator or escalator is designed and manufactured. In addition, state laws require elevators and escalators to be inspected on a regular basis and to be properly maintained at all times. Unfortunately, serious, even fatal, elevator and escalator accidents still occur for a variety of reasons, including, but not limited to:

  • Design defect - despite the rigid product testing requirements in the United States, defective designs do still make it into the marketplace.
  • Defect in the manufacture - though the intended design may be safe, a defect introduced during the manufacturing stage of even a single part in an elevator or escalator could lead to tragedy.
  • Faulty installation - if an elevator or escalator was not installed perfectly it will inevitably lead to a breakdown and possibly serious injuries.
  • Inadequate maintenance - elevators and escalators have moving parts that require regular maintenance. Failing to perform that maintenance often leads to serious accidents.
  • Sudden, unexpected stops - if an elevator or escalator is full and it suddenly stops, injuries can occur as the occupants slam into one another.
  • Entrapment - whether in the "teeth" of an escalator or the doors of an elevator, entrapments accidents can be deadly.
  • Loading high or low - in an elevator, if the car does not stop exactly level with the floor, loading injuries can easily occur.

If you have been injured in a New York elevator or escalator accident, or you are the surviving family member of someone who was fatally injured in one, you could be entitled to compensation for the injuries or loss you suffered. Contact the experienced attorneys at SIMON & GILMAN, LLP to schedule a consultation.

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