Elevators are found in many places—parking lots, hospitals, office buildings, apartment buildings, hotels, casinos, and airports are a few of the buildings where they are used. In busy locations, they can be used a hundred times or more in a single day. While elevators are in general a safe and convenient way to reach different levels of a building, they can pose a serious danger to people when they malfunction, often causing terrifying accidents and catastrophic injuries or deaths.
Common Causes of Elevator Accidents
When elevators are defective or in need of repair, people using them can be injured in many ways. Common reasons these accidents occur include:
- Mis-leveling. This is one of the most common causes of accidents on elevators. It happens when the elevator fails to come to a stop level with the floor it is stopping on. This can cause an unsuspecting passenger to trip and fall, sometimes with serious consequences.
- Defective sliding doors. When elevator sensors do not work properly, the elevator door can close too quickly, sometimes crushing people trying to enter or exit the elevator.
- High speed. When the elevator is moving at an unsafe speed, people can be thrown onto the floor or into the elevator walls, causing them to suffer serious injuries, such as spine, back, knee, or head injuries. These accidents often happen when counterweights malfunction or the control system fails to detect that the elevator is going too fast.
- Falls into elevator shafts. If there are no warnings of an open elevator shaft or staff members do not safely escort passengers out of a malfunctioning elevator, people can fall into the open shaft—often dying from their injuries.
- Pulley system malfunction. When the pulley system malfunctions or breaks down, the elevator can drop suddenly down the shaft, crashing when it hits the bottom level.
- Lack of maintenance and repair. Elevators must be inspected, maintained, and repaired on a regular schedule by qualified personnel. When this does not happen, an elevator accident can be the result.
- Faulty wiring. Faulty wiring can cause the elevator to malfunction or cause a person in the elevator to suffer injuries from an electrical shock.
If you were hurt in an elevator accident, you need an experienced attorney who understands the complexities of elevators and how to hold the liable parties responsible for compensating you. Call Jones Wilson Injury Lawyers today to schedule a free, no-obligation consultation.