Escalators are everywhere. They can be found at shopping malls, airports, hotels, public transportation terminals, movie theatres, and many other public places. While they are much more convenient than walking up many flights of stairs, they can also be more dangerous. A woman was recently killed in China by an escalator, and the tragedy made headlines across the United States. Each year, over 10,000 people across the nation are sent to the emergency room due to escalator related injuries.
Statistics show that people over 65 and children under 14 are at the highest risk for escalator injury. According to research done by The Ohio State University College of Medicine and Public Health, a majority of the injuries sustained by children were caused by entrapment. Lacerations to the hand were the most common injury in children.
Some safety tips for riding on an escalator:
• Do not engage in horseplay on the escalator
• Do not walk in the opposite direction of the escalator
• Do not bring strollers onto the escalator
• Exercise caution if you are not wearing appropriate shoes and make sure your shoes are tied
• Hold on to the hand rail
• Hold children’s hands
• Do not sit on the steps or the hand rail
• Avoid the sides of steps
• Step off carefully when the escalator reaches the bottom
• Be aware of the emergency button location
The owner of a premise has a duty to ensure that it is reasonably safe. If that duty is breached, escalator injury liability may arise due to negligence. Depending on the situation, a claim may also be raised on the theory of strict liability since an escalator may be viewed as unreasonably dangerous.
If you or a loved one has been injured by an escalator, contact an experienced attorney who can best advise you regarding your legal rights. You may be able to recover compensation for your medical bills as well as pain and suffering. Call the personal injury attorneys at Sakkas, Cahn & Weiss, LLP at (212) 571-7171 today.