Construction Accidents Elevator Shaft Falls

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Construction sites are often poorly designed or improperly inspected, and they can be dangerous. An open elevator shaft should be clearly marked and barricaded to prevent accidents, yet most reported elevator shaft accidents could have been prevented if the elevator shaft had been properly covered or barricaded.  Elevators accidents can result in serious injuries or death to both the general public and to workers that install, repair, or maintain them. The public is at risk from malfunctions such as doors closing on them, being struck by an elevator car when entering or exiting, or from tripping hazards that can result from the misalignment of the elevator carriage and floor. Workers are at an even higher risk due to the nature of the work. The possibility injury or death from falling into an elevator shaft when they are when cleaning elevator shafts, conducting emergency evacuations of stalled elevators, or working on construction projects at or near open shafts is a real threat.

Accidents involving elevators and escalators kill about 30 people every year while injuring another 17,000 according to data from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS). Half of the worker fatalities that result come from working in or near elevator shafts and falling into the shaft. Additionally, workers have been injured or killed when they were caught between elevators or between an elevator and a door; when they became entangled in elevator equipment or were hit by an elevator car; or were involved in an elevator collapse.

Construction Site Injuries

Often referred to as the “Fatal Four”, the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) reports that the four leading causes of death for construction workers are:

  • Falls – 35%
  • Struck by Objects – 10%
  • Electrocutions – 9%
  • Caught in or between something – 2%

By eliminating the “Fatal Four” from the work environment, 419 lives would be saved every year. This could be accomplished by improving safety at construction sites and alleviating hazardous conditions that can arise.

A fall down and open elevator shaft will often result in more severe injuries than a fall on a construction site. Because elevator shafts are deep and narrow, a victim is likely to suffer from bruises, scrapes, and broken bones from impacting the walls and the floor of the elevator shaft. And in severe falls where the appropriate safety equipment has not been provided, head trauma, spinal injury, brain damage, and even death are likely. Many of the accidents involving severe injuries are complicated by the fact that obtaining medical treatment will often take longer due to the design of the structure and the procedures required to get you safely out of the shaft without causing further injury.

Contact Zinda Law Group Today

If you have had been injured in an elevator accident, filing a claim for compensation can get your medical bills paid and your lost wages recovered. The Personal Injury attorneys at Zinda Law Group have experience representing workers and others injured on construction sites and in elevator accidents, so why not call us today. Your call is free and the consultation is free too. (800) 863-5312.