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Freight elevator crushes 43 year old NYC worker to death

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On Saturday July 23, 2016 a 43 year old discount store worker was crushed to death by a freight elevator when it suddenly lurched upward and pinned him to the ceiling while was he was loading boxes into it, the New York Daily News reported the following day. The newspaper reports that this incident “marked the second time in seven months that a person was killed by a city elevator.”

According to ConsumerWatch.com, “U.S. elevators make 18 billion passenger trips per year.” Those trips result in about 27 deaths annually, according to estimates from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics and the Consumer Product Safety Commission. The NYC Department of Buildings reports that there are more than 66,600 passenger elevators and 4,100 freight elevators in the city. More than half of all the elevators in the city are in the borough of Manhattan. It is estimated by fivethirtyeight.com that there are “many more miles of elevator shafts (about 1,570, assuming a reasonable average floor height, etc.) than there are miles of subway tracks (about 840).”

Elevators throughout the city require routine and regular inspections, adjustments and maintenance to insure their safe operation. A building’s owner’s failure to consistently perform inspections and maintenance of passenger and freight elevators may play a significant role in causing an accident. There are industry standards, city codes and state regulations that must be adhered to insure the safety of riders of both passenger and freight elevators. When such standards, codes and regulations are not followed severe injuries or fatalities can occur.

If you or a loved one has sustained a serious injury because an elevator was not properly maintained, inspected or repaired, you should consult our skilled and experienced accident attorneys. For more than 100 years, the firm of O’Dwyer & Bernstien has been protecting the rights of injured workers and members of the general public, including those who have suffered serious injuries as a result of unsafe elevators. We will evaluate the details of your case, hire appropriate experts and thoroughly investigate the accident to ensure that you or your loved one receives maximum financial compensation. Please contact O’Dwyer & Bernstien promptly for a free consultation.

Jason Fuiman

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Co-Managing Partner and Chair of O'Dwyer & Bernstien's Labor & Employee Benefits practice, Jason has over twenty years of experience in the New York legal industry.