Elevators are a must when it comes to accessing the multiple floors of New York City high rises. Once the elevator doors close, you entrust the device to deliver you safely to your destination. The mechanics and other various components of an elevator system are complex, making the chance of an elevator accident a real possibility. If you suffered serious injuries due to a tragic elevator accident, a New York City elevator accident lawyer can help you pursue compensation for your damages.
When Transport Turns Tragic
Elisha Graves Otis changed the elevator industry in the 1800s with the invention of a safety brake. His first commercial elevator was launched in 1857 as it carried shoppers among the five floors of a New York City department store.
Since then, New York City has become home to the most elevators in North America. More than 70,000 elevator devices are under the jurisdiction of the Department of Buildings.
From shopping to work or home, no one steps into an elevator expecting to suffer serious injuries. While it may appear safe, it only takes one of the following tragedies to change your life forever:
- Poor maintenance: Important mechanical and technical devices work behind the scene to make an elevator operate. If the elevator is not routinely inspected or properly maintained, your life is possibly at risk for serious harm.
- Malfunctioning doors: The powerful force of elevator doors that close too soon can crush or otherwise injure passengers. If you experienced broken bones, internal bleeding, or other significant injuries, you may face a long recovery.
- Sudden stops or drops: The enclosed nature of an elevator can make a sudden stop or drop a terrifying event. The jolt to your body can cause you to lose your balance, fall, and possibly strike your head against the hard floor, walls, or doors.
- Unbalanced leveling: If the elevator floor does not meet the floor where passengers await, a fall is possible. The slightest unevenness can easily go unnoticed by passengers, making a simple step tragic in a second.
These are just a few examples of often preventable types of elevator accidents that cause passengers severe injuries. In especially tragic cases, some victims do not survive their injuries.
NYC Elevator Accidents Resulting in Death
According to data from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, elevator and escalator accidents kill approximately 30 people each year and injure more than 17,000.
If your loved one died due to an elevator accident caused by negligence, a member of our team can assist you. At Chaikin LaPenna, PLLC, we investigate elevator accidents to identify all parties liable for the damages our clients incur.
The unexpected loss of your close loved one demands answers and deserves justice. As personal injury lawyers, we typically pursue the following types of damages:
- Any final medical costs associated with your loved one’s death
- Costs associated with a funeral, burial, or memorial
- The loss of income from your loved one
- The potential future income had your loved one survived
- Loss of inheritance
- Loss of companionship
Upon a careful review of your case, a lawyer from Chaikin LaPenna, PLLC, can determine the best steps for moving forward. A wrongful death case is challenging and best left to someone who understands how the law applies to your specific situation.
Serious Injuries and the High Cost of Medical Care
For those who survive an elevator accident, their medical costs start when they accept transport to a hospital. Hospital and doctors’ fees are generally just the start of massive medical expenses. Your inability to work can make this time financially stressful. The expenses outlined below for certain types of injuries are why securing legal representation is an important first step following your accident:
- A fall due to a sudden stop or unleveled flooring can result in a traumatic brain injury. The disruption of normal brain function can require a lifetime of care, with some victims requiring placement in a skilled nursing facility. These facilities are expensive, with monthly costs averaging more than $8,000 per month.
- An elevator accident that results in a spinal cord injury can cause permanent paralysis. According to data from the Christopher and Dana Reeve Foundation, this catastrophic injury can cost millions of dollars throughout a patient’s lifetime.
- Internal bleeding is another serious type of injury that —if left undetected—can lead to organ damage and possible death.
No matter how you feel immediately following an elevator accident, seek medical attention. Medical professionals can treat your injuries, and your medical care establishes a record for a possible civil case.
Your New York City Elevator Accident Lawyers
At Chaikin LaPenna, PLLC, we fight hard on behalf of our clients to secure the best outcome possible. While no one case is alike, and there is never a guarantee of compensation, pursuing civil action is your right.
Never accept an insurance settlement without legal representation. Insurance companies only want to protect their best interests by offering the lowest sum possible. If you accept their offer, you generally cannot pursue legal action later, should your medical condition worsen.
Let a member of our team handle aggressive insurance adjusters. We know how to spot their various tactics to underpay or to deny accident claims. While most civil cases settle out of court, Chaikin LaPenna, PLLC is ready to go to trial if necessary.
An elevator accident is a frightening experience that stays with you long after the initial event. The pain and suffering from your experience deserve accountability for those responsible. It is our responsibility to prove negligence.
Gather any evidence you may possess concerning your accident and injuries, then contact us today for a free case evaluation. You owe us nothing unless we win compensation for you. You cannot afford not to hire a lawyer. Get started on your path toward possible justice by contacting Chaikin LaPenna, PLLC, today.
No Fees Until We Win.
Please call us at (212) 977-2020 or fill out the form below to get started.