Massachusetts Elevator Accident Lawyer
At DelSignore Law, our mission as a firm is to help people get their life back together after a legal problem; getting injured as a the result of someone else’s negligence, as the law calls it, is something that could derail your life’s goals and ambitions. There is nothing worse than having your ability to live your life, spend time with your family, work out, when though no fault of your own you are injured. At DelSignore law, we are here to help and believe you deserve to have you life back.
Imagine you are on vacation and you just check into your hotel. You endured a long journey. You finally get into the elevator on your way to your room. You have made it to your destination. You suddenly feel a sense of relief and then the elevator malfunctions causing it to free-fall. The next thing you know you are waking up in a hospital with several injuries.
What you do next can be critical to your recovery. It is important to seek medical attention in order for a licensed physician to determine the severity of your injuries. The severity of your injuries along with your treatment and the degree of negligence with regards to the elevator will help determine the value of your claim.How Common Are Elevator Injuries?
According to consumerwatch.com, it is estimated that nationwide there are 900,000 elevators that are in operation that service approximately 20,000. It is estimated that approximately 30 people die and another 17,000 are seriously injured in escalator and elevator accidents every year.
It is up to the city and state governments to ensure annual public elevator inspection is carried out and that elevators incidents are reported properly. In Massachusetts, by statute elevators are to be inspected at least once per year or when deemed necessary. Unlike automobiles, elevator accident inspections and part recalls do not occur at the federal level. The Consumer Product Safety Commission (“CPSC”) lacks the authority to regulate elevators. Because there is no federal part recalls there is little printed information regarding elevator defects.Common Elevator Malfunctions
It is important to protect yourself from elevator accidents and injuries by understanding the various types of elevator accidents. It is important to pay attention to the floor of the elevator. Make sure the floor is level with the building floor as this could indicate a potential hazard. When an elevator has stopped moving it is important not to try to force open the door as this could also create a potential hazard. In the event of a fire, take the stairs instead of the elevator to ensure you can safely escape.
Common types of elevator injury cases are: free-falls, door slam/malfunction, improper leveling, and abrupt stopping. Improper leveling and elevator doors that are not working properly are the two most common malfunctions. If the elevator door is not working properly it could lead to a door closing on a body part or it could lead to an open shaft resulting in a fall into the shaft. Some types of malfunctions that can lead to a rapid free-fall within the shaft are malfunction of the pulley system, a mechanical breakdown and/or a defect causing the elevator to free-fall.Most Likely To Be Injured By An Elevator Malfunction
Reports show that elevator maintenance workers, workers who install elevators, elderly people, children, and those people who ride in elevators daily are the most likely to be injured by an elevator malfunction. Reports from the U.S. Labor Department’s Census of Fatal Occupational Injuries shows that half of the elevator malfunction fatalities occur during a repair or maintenance resulting in a fatality of the worker.The Best Thing To Do If An Elevator Malfunctions And Is Free-Falling
Studies suggest the best thing to do if you find yourself in a free-falling elevator is to lie flat on the floor in the center of the car. Lying flat on the floor will evenly distribute your body weight and spread the force of impact. Most people assume standing while bending at the knee is the best method to brace for impact, but free falling will expose you to extreme gravitational force. If you are standing it will be impossible to support your own body weight with the exposure to extreme gravitation force resulting in substantial injury.Who Is Liable For Elevator Injuries?
Business and/or property owners have a legal obligation to protect patrons from harm resulting in bodily injury. One way to protect patrons is by conducting routine maintenance to ensure elevators are safe for the public. If a business and/or property owner fails to maintain the elevator then he/she could potentially be liable for any injuries or damages that results from his/her neglect.
The burden is on you as the plaintiff to prove that the business and/or property owner acted negligently causing you injury. The courts in Massachusetts insist that the plaintiff establish verifiable proof of the defendant’s inability to protect patrons from harm caused by the elevator.
If you are injured in an elevator call or text DelSignore law at 781-686-5924.