Woman freed after 3 days stuck in Manhattan elevator

On Behalf of | Feb 1, 2019 | Premises Liability

Imagine spending three days trapped inside of a stuck elevator. That was the unfortunate reality for a New York City resident who spent three uncomfortable days trapped inside a Manhattan elevator car last month.

As reported by CBS New York, the Fire Department of New York City (FDNY) was called out to rescue a female employee who was stuck in the elevator of her employer’s East 56th Street residence between Park and Madison Avenues.

She had initially entered the elevator on a Friday. For unknown reasons, the elevator malfunctioned and wouldn’t move. Because the woman’s employers left town for the weekend, she was not discovered or rescued until the following Monday.

Upon her rescue, she was taken to a local medical facility where, despite her ordeal, she was reported to be in good condition.

Few other details are known about the woman’s experience. However, it is likely that she could potentially file a premises liability claim for any injuries she may have suffered as a result of being trapped for such an extended period.

The reason is that building owners and property owners have the duty to ensure that their properties are well-maintained and that elevators, escalators, stairs and fire escapes all are in good working order and safe to use.

It’s unclear what the problem was with the elevator in question. Older New York City buildings may be equipped with elevator systems that are decades old. Simply being old does not preclude that an elevator is safe, however.

In this case, it’s not clear whether the elevator had been inspected recently as mandated by state law. Regardless, the failure of the elevator to operate properly is indicative of a malfunction that building owners knew or should have known presented a danger to others.


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