Many people who live and work in New York City rely on elevators on a daily basis to get to their offices and residences in multi-story buildings. New York City has more than 70,000 elevators and escalators, according to the NYC Department of Buildings. New Yorkers assume that elevators are safe and properly maintained, and in most cases, they are. However, there is a small percentage of unsafe elevators that result in injuries to passengers.
Elevator accidents occur in apartment buildings, office buildings, hotels, department stores, shopping malls, and hospitals. The causes of elevator accidents range from poor maintenance to faulty construction and installation. Common victims include passengers, building employees, custodial staff, emergency personnel, and elevator maintenance workers.
When an elevator accident occurs, the owner of the premises or others may be liable for the injuries suffered by the victim. Our New York City elevator accident attorneys at David Resnick & Associates, P.C., hold property owners, elevator manufacturers and maintenance companies accountable when their negligence causes someone to suffer a serious injury. Have you been injured in an elevator in New York? If so, you need to understand your legal options. You may be entitled to compensation.
Our New York personal injury attorneys offer a free case review and handle elevator accident cases on a contingency fee basis. This means that you won’t owe us a dime until you recover financial compensation. Call 212-279-2000 to schedule a free, no-obligation consultation so we can discuss your legal options.
Do I Need an Elevator Accident Lawyer?
Elevator accidents can cause serious and fatal injuries, including neck injuries, back injuries, leg injuries, knee injuries,traumatic brain injuries (TBIs), spinal cord injuries, broken bones, and more. Elevator accidents fall under the area of law known as premises liability. If you have been injured or your loved one has been killed in an elevator accident in New York City, you need an experienced premises liability attorney on your side.
A wide range of factors can contribute to elevator accidents. You should seek medical attention to ensure that the injuries you sustained are treated immediately. Getting the proper medical care can rule out any underlying issues that could lead to further damage if left untreated. Furthermore, the medical records of your treatment by a doctor or other medical professional can help a New York elevator accident attorney prove that the injuries you suffered were the direct result of the elevator accident.
The aftermath of an elevator accident can leave injury victims feeling helpless. If you have been injured in a New York elevator accident, odds are you have suffered injuries that were beyond your control. An elevator accident attorney will fight to hold the responsible parties accountable.
Elevator accidents can cause injuries that result in long-term medical issues or even permanent disabilities that make one unable to work.
Following an elevator accident, you may be entitled to seek compensation for:
- Medical bills (past, present, and future)
- Lost wages
- Lost earning capacity
- Rehabilitation therapy
- Pain and suffering
- Emotional distress
When you hire David Resnick & Associates, P.C. to handle your elevator accident case, our highly skilled legal team will be in your corner every step of the way.
Our New York elevator accident attorneys can help with a wide range of tasks relating to your case, including:
- Provide an evaluation of your elevator accident case
- Answer any questions that you may have so that you have a clear understanding of the legal process ahead
- Collect your medical records and document all your injuries
- Gather documents that describe the relationship between the building owner and the elevator repair company
- Collect elevator service records.
- Gather inspection information between the repair company and the building owner
- Secure testimony from the elevator or escalator repair personnel.
- Identify all the parties who were responsible for the accident and your subsequent injuries
- Reconstruct the accident
- Develop a strategy that gets you the full and fair compensation you deserve
Elevator Accidents in New York
A complicated system of state and city laws regulates the installation, inspection, maintenance and operation of elevators in the City. Negligent property owners, elevator repair companies, and elevator manufacturers may be held liable for injuries due to improper installation, lack of maintenance and design defects. In many elevator accident cases, an in-depth investigation is required to determine the cause of the accident and identify all the potentially at-fault parties that may be financially liable.
According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, approximately 27 people die each year from elevator accidents in the United States. In 2010, there were 53 elevator accidents in New York City.
Why Do Elevator Accidents in NYC Happen?
Common causes of elevator accidents in New York City and throughout the country include:
- Falls into the elevator shaft: An elevator that is in good working order will only open its doors when the elevator is in alignment with the floor where it has stopped. If an elevator is broken and stalled above the landing, or if a maintenance worker is working on the elevator shaft, an open elevator shaft may be exposed. This can lead to serious or fatal injuries if a person falls down the empty elevator shaft.
- Sudden stops: These accidents occur when a passenger hits the floor or walls of the elevator cart due to a sudden deceleration, which can be caused by malfunctioning parts, bunched or detached cables, electronic failure, or elevator overload. Because sudden stop accidents can be caused by many factors, it can be difficult to determine the exact cause of the malfunction. A lawyer who is experienced with elevator accident cases will be able to find any indicators of negligence that caused the malfunction.
- Over-speed: An elevator passenger may suffer severe injuries to his or her back, knees, ankles, or other body parts if they are thrown to the floor or against the wall due to an elevator moving at excessive speeds. Over-speed accidents can be caused by defective control systems that fail to correctly stop the elevator. They also can be caused by the malfunctions of counterweights.
- Power failures: Inconsistencies between the electrical power supply of the building and the elevator’s motors can cause motor failure.
- Defective sliding doors: Injuries from elevator doors can occur from the elevator door closing too quickly and striking a passenger. These door strike cases can happen due to negligent maintenance of the sensors that reopen the doors when the edges hit an object. They also are caused by negligent maintenance of the sensors that detect when there is a person or object in the path of the door.
- Misalignment: When the elevator is not in the correct alignment with the floor landing, it can lead to a trip and fall accident. A passenger may trip and fall when entering or exiting the elevator due to the difference in heights of the two surfaces.
- Faulty or antiquated electronic controls: Elevator operating software needs to be upgraded often with new technology that improves safety.
Who is Responsible for Elevator Accidents in New York?
When someone is seriously injured in an elevator accident, there may be multiple parties liable for the injury.
Parties that could be responsible for injuries in these accidents include:
- The manager of the property where the elevator is located
- The property owner
- The elevator manufacturer
Property owners often hire a professional service to repair and maintain the elevators in their building.
Maintenance and service companies can be held responsible for faulty or incompetent maintenance work, such as:
- Faulty repairs
- Failure to perform routine maintenance
- Failure to maintain maintenance records
In most cases, elevator accidents fall under the legal category of premises liability. Business and property owners have a responsibility to ensure that elevators are maintained properly and those outdated elevators are replaced.
When someone suffers a serious injury on an elevator in New York, the defendants will likely try to deny liability. When confronting the liability of an elevator company or commercial property owner and their insurance companies, elevator accident victims need a knowledgeable New York premises liability lawyer on their side to identify the responsible parties and seek appropriate compensation.
Contact A New York City Elevator Accident Attorney
Have you been seriously injured in an elevator accident in New York City? If so, don’t hesitate to call the experienced elevator accident attorneys at David Resnick & Associates, P.C. for help today. We will be by your side throughout the entire legal process and fight for the maximum compensation you deserve for your injuries. To schedule a free and confidential consultation, contact us now at 212-279-2000.