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Elevator accidents are unfortunately very common. Elevators have to installed properly to begin with and then they need to be maintained and inspected regularly according to state laws. Landlords and building owners cannot breach this duty or avoid the responsibility that comes with this duty.
Many times building owners tend to let elevators fall into disrepair. The most common form of elevator accidents comes from either the elevator doors not working properly, often resulting in crushing injuries to a person on the elevator, or a complete mechanical failure and breakdown, which causes the elevator to drop suddenly. There may also just be a design of the elevator that was not done properly at the outset when the elevator was installed. Other reasons include wiring that was not done right or a pulley system malfunction.
The owner has to allow the elevator to be inspected by state regulators periodically to be sure the elevator is in fact safe and to make sure the elevator is passing the tests the state puts the elevator through. If the tests do not occur, or if the elevator’s safety does not pass the test, then the elevator is not safe for operation and should not be ridden on. It is important that tests are done at least annually on the safety and soundness of the elevator.
Of course, things fall through the cracks at times and sometimes not every elevator is inspected. An experienced attorney can do the proper discovery to figure out whether the proper tests were done and when they were done. If you’re injured on an elevator, you may have a claim against the elevator company or the owner of the building in which the elevator resides.
Escalators are a common fixture in virtually every multistory office, shopping mall, and retail outlet in this country and yet few people appreciate the danger escalators pose until an injury occurs. Like elevators, escalators are subject to strict laws concerning their safety, maintenance, and upkeep. There are approximately 33,000 elevators operating in the USA. While there are less escalators than elevators, there are about 15 times more people hurt on escalators than elevators. The most common kind of accident on escalator occurs when someone falls on or over an escalator. The second most common kind of injury occurs because of entrapment, meaning someone gets sucked into the escalator. There are two different kinds of falls that are most commonly reported with escalators. The first happens when the person falls on the escalator while it’s moving.
The second is when the person falls over the handrail. Children and the elderly were the two age groups who suffered both the greatest number of accidents and the most serious injuries. Some incidents on escalators were so serious they resulted in death.
The most common errors with escalators are when they start or stop very suddenly, often without warning or cause, or when there is not the proper kind of maintenance, inspection, maintenance, or when there are loose parts from the normal wear and tear associated with an aging piece of equipment.
Escalator accidents are the most common in large shopping centers, but they can also take place at airports, such as the SeaTac or DFW airport. They are also common at large offices. The owner of the building that houses the escalator has a duty to make sure the escalator is safe and running properly. This means checking the escalator routinely and putting warning signs up if the escalator is not working as it should.
The most common injuries from escalator accidents are:
While rare, there are occasional deaths associated with escalator accidents. If you have been injured in an escalator accident, you should seek immediate medical care to the affected part of your body and follow your doctor’s advice. The Jackman Law Firm offers free consultations.
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