The Dangers of Escalator Accidents
The risk of injury can present itself in workplaces, homes, and public spaces across the nation. A staple of malls, the escalator is just one of these injury hazards. Although a well-maintained escalator poses few hazards when it is used properly, there is always the risk of a malfunction. When a property owner fails to maintain their escalators, accidents and injuries can occur.
Individuals injured on escalators can seek compensation for their damages by filing a personal injury claim. The circumstances of an accident determine which party is liable for the victim’s injuries. When an accident can be attributed to poor maintenance or a lack of safety equipment like handrails on an escalator, the property owner may be liable for the victim’s damages. It is also possible for an escalator’s manufacturer or distributor to be determined to be negligent and required to cover the victim’s damages via a product liability claim.
Defective Escalator Hazards
An escalator malfunction can be dangerous. In a recent case in Hong Kong, an escalator suddenly reversed, resulting in injuries to 18 people, including one man who suffered a severe head injury.
Sudden reversal is only one of the ways an escalator can malfunction. Suddenly speeding up, slowing down, or stopping completely can also injure the people on an escalator. Sometimes, hazards in escalators are not due to malfunctions, but faulty or defective parts. Broken steps, missing teeth on the escalator’s track, loose handrails, and faulty brakes are all possible defects that can cause accidents.
A few of the ways victims can be injured on escalators include:
- Entrapment at the entry on the balustrade. Fingers, hands, and personal accessories can be trapped here is the opening is too large
- Entrapment at the comb plate
- Entrapment between steps
Facts and Statistics About Escalator Injuries in the United States
According to the American Association for Justice (AAJ), there are 18 escalator accidents for every elevator accident that occurs in the United States. The association also claims that the number of escalator injury and fatalities in the United States has steadily risen every year, doubling from 1990 to 2000. In 2013, more than 12,000 injuries and fatalities related to escalator injuries were reported in the United States.
Children and elderly adults are more likely to suffer escalator injuries than other demographics. Falls are a particular concern for the elderly, and children tend to suffer entrapment injuries.
New Brunswick Personal Injury Lawyers at the Law Offices of Harold J. Gerr Represent Victims Injured in Escalator Accidents
Injury hazards are everywhere. Many Americans ride escalators and elevators every day without thinking about the potential injuries they can face in the event of an accident. If you are injured in an escalator accident or any other type of accident on private or public property, consider working with an experienced New Brunswick personal injury lawyer to pursue compensation for your damages. Complete our online form or call 877-249-4600 to schedule your free consultation with the Law Offices of Harold J. Gerr. Our offices are conveniently located in Highland Park, New Jersey and we serve clients from East Brunswick, New Brunswick, Sayreville, Metuchen, South River, Somerset, Edison, South Plainfield, Fords, Middlesex, Bound Brook, Iselin, Perth Amboy, Old Bridge, and Colonia.