Escalators are found throughout New York, but how many people -- aside from first-time riders -- consider the dangers, for a second before climbing on board?
Remember the first time you rode an escalator when you were a child? You were hesitant, excited and maybe a little nervous before taking your first step, and for good reason.
An escalator is a giant, moving, metal staircase. It's clear to see how someone could get hurt. A shoelace or loose article of clothing could easily get pulled inside. You could trip and fall, and you could fall from a great height. These machines are just as dangerous as they are convenient and miraculous.
Dangers highlighted by recent escalator accident in Hong Kong
Not long ago, an escalator in a packed Hong Kong mall reversed without warning. Eighteen people suffered injury after they crashed to the bottom of the contraption. Surveillance camera footage captured the entire incident on video. One man was in serious condition with a traumatic head injury.
Why so many escalator accidents?
According to the American Association for Justice, about 18 escalator accidents happen for every elevator accident. Every year, more escalator accidents happen. In 1990, escalators caused under 5,000 injuries and deaths. In 2013, they caused 12,260.
Part of the reason for the rise in escalator accidents could be due to the simple fact that there are a lot more of them. It's rare to visit a mall where you don't find an escalator. The majority of airports have them as well.
Businesses need to maintain their escalators and keep them safe
Businesses need to keep their escalators safe and appropriately maintain them. Failing to do so will cause the business to be liable in the event of an injurious accident.
If you or someone you love suffered injury in an escalator accident, it might not be the injured party's fault. A New York personal injury lawyer can review the facts and circumstances surrounding the accident to determine if the victim can hold the at-fault party responsible by making a viable claim for damages in civil court.
Source: Nov. 30, -0001