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Elevator Accidents

pushing an elevator buttonNJ personal injury lawyers serving accident victims in Hudson, Bergen, Middlesex, Passaic, Essex, and Morris counties.

If you were to think of the most dangerous modes of transportation, elevators probably would not top the list. Even still, accidents involving elevators and escalators kill about 30 people each year. Another 17,000 people per year are seriously injured. Elevators harm more people than escalators, causing almost 90% of the deaths and 60% of the serious injuries.

Elevator accidents are complicated – not just because of the mechanical issues involved but because of the many legal questions they raise. There can be many parties involved, with each pointing the finger at another. That is why it pays to have New Jersey premises liability lawyers at Eisbrouch Marsh on your side.

Our attorneys know how to sort through the facts and uncover the truth about negligence.

Types of elevator accidents

Elevators can injure or kill both members of the general public and the workers who install, repair, or maintain them. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics and the Consumer Product Safety Commission, almost half of all elevator death victims are people working in or near elevator shafts – and half of those are killed in falls down the shaft. Some other elevator injuries include victims getting caught in or between moving parts, falling in a platform collapse, or being struck by elevator counterweights.

Elevator accidents can lead to injuries ranging from minor to the most severe possible. They include:

  • Sprains from sudden lurches
  • Anxiety attacks when doors fail to open
  • Paralysis caused by unexpected drops
  • Amputations after being caught between malfunctioning doors
  • Death from trying to climb out of a car that suddenly starts to move

Potential causes of elevator failure

Both commercial and residential buildings often have both an owner, tenants, and a property manager. The elevator has typically been manufactured by one company, installed by another, and possibly maintained by yet another. To state it another way, because of the nature of business, there are a host of parties who may be liable for an elevator injury.

The skilled premises liability attorneys at Eisbrouch Marsh look at the big picture to piece together who is at fault for an elevator accident. This can mean reviewing surveillance video from the site, years’ worth of maintenance records, receipts for installation and repairs, and investigating who has performed related work on the electrical system. They will work closely with industry experts to build a solid case for compensation.

Who is eligible to file a premises liability lawsuit?

If you or a loved one has been injured in an elevator accident in Hackensack, Paramus, or anywhere in Bergen County, you may be eligible to file a personal injury lawsuit.

Compensation may be available for:

  • Past and future medical expenses
  • Lost wages
  • Pain and suffering
  • Wrongful death in the case of fatal accidents

As in any civil case, the burden of proof is on the plaintiff to prove that the defendant is at fault for the injuries. Because there may be different companies that own and operate the building where the elevator injury takes place, and still other companies that are responsible for repairing and maintain the elevator, you need an experienced lawyer with a proven track record of success.

Depending on the facts of the case, there may also be claims against the manufacturer or supplier of the elevator. When an elevator accident is the result of a suspected design or manufacturing defect, you need an attorney who is also skilled in product liability litigation.

At Eisbrouch Marsh, our NJ elevator accident lawyers have the experience to handle every angle of your case, including any underlying product liability. We work hand-in-hand with experts to understand and prove the cause of your injuries.

Recent NY elevator accidents

In 2012, a popular Manhattan fitness trainer filed a lawsuit over his own 2011 elevator injury, which left him partially paralyzed. The trainer stepped into the elevator in the building where he lives and pressed the button when the car went into a free fall. He later described it as the scariest thing he had ever experienced, and is now so terrified that he relies on friends to carry him up 26 flights of stairs to his apartment. His lawsuit named both the property’s landlord, Stonehenge Properties, and two elevator maintenance companies – Century Vertical Systems and Transel Elevator.

Transel Elevator was implicated in another New York elevator accident one year earlier when an advertising executive was crushed to death in her Madison Avenue office building. The executive got her foot caught between the elevator car and the lobby door as the elevator doors were closing. The elevator doors remained open but the car quickly rose, pulling the executive to her death between the floors. The building was owned by the executive’s employer, Y&R, and the 13 elevators were maintained by Transel Elevator. An investigation revealed that half an hour before the accident, a maintenance worker for Transel had disabled a safety feature that would have prevented the car from moving when the doors were open.

How Eisbrouch Marsh elevator accident attorneys can help

An elevator accident can be harrowing, and the ensuing legal battle confusing. But with the New Jersey slip, trip and fall lawyers at Eisbrouch Marsh by your side, you will have knowledgeable and caring advocates and your best chance of success.

We look forward to meeting you with a no-cost initial consultation, so call 201-977-4961 to arrange one today in our Hackensack, NJ offices. We also represent clients in all NYC boroughs and Long Island.

  1. Electronic Library of Construction Occupational Safety & Health, Deaths and Injuries Involving Elevators and Escalators – A Report of the Center To Protect Workers’ Rights, http://www.elcosh.org/document/1232/d000397/Deaths%2Band%2BInjuries%2BInvolving%2BElevators%2Band%2BEscalators%2B-%2BA%2BReport%2Bof%2Bthe%2BCenter%2BTo%2BProtect%2BWorkers%2527%2BRights.html?show_text=1
  2. Huffington Post, Fitness Trainer Corey Hill Files Lawsuit After Elevator Accident Leaves Him Partially Paralyzed, http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/01/06/fitness-trainer-corey-hill-elevator-accident_n_1190390.html
  3. Huffington Post, Suzanne Hart, Advertising Executive, Killed in NY Elevator Accident, http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/12/15/suzanne-hart-advertising-_n_1150807.html