Escalators seem harmless. They are just moving stairs that help you move between levels faster. However, over 10,000 escalator accidents happen every year. If you have suffered an injury in an escalator accident in an airport, in a mall or somewhere else, you may have a right to be compensated for your injuries.
Types and Causes of Escalator Accidents
Escalators are responsible for many serious injuries every year. Some people are even killed in escalator accidents. There is usually some type of human error behind all escalator accidents.
Escalator accidents can be caused by:
• Faulty design
• Improper installation
• Poorly maintained equipment
• Improperly operated escalators
• Defective equipment
• Hazards surrounding the escalator
While the property owner has a duty to make sure escalators are in good working order, in cases of escalator accidents there are many different parties who could potentially be at fault. These include everyone from the manufacturer of the escalator to the company that installed it.
The most common type of escalator accident is when it suddenly stops. This can throw people onto the floor below or onto the sharp teeth of the escalator edge. Other common types of accidents include people or clothing getting caught in gaps in the rails, tripping or slipping near the top or bottom of an escalator because of a spill, or the rail catches a piece of clothing causing a fall on the escalator.
Types of Injuries in Escalator Accidents
Many types of escalator injuries are mild, but people have been permanently disabled and even killed by escalators. Every case is unique.
Some common types of escalator accidents are:
• Head injuries
• Neck and back injuries
• Severe brain trauma
• Amputated digits or limbs
• Spinal cord injuries
• Torn or sprained ligaments and tendons
After an escalator injury it is important to get yourself examined within a few days of the incident. Even if you do not feel any symptoms, you could have a hidden injury. Often things like traumatic brain in jury will not have any immediate symptoms.
Your doctor can make sure you really are healthy. If any injuries are discovered you will begin to heal faster with proper treatment. Going to the doctor also gives you solid documentation of your injury, which could become important if you have to file a claim.
What It Takes to Win a Claim
Making a successful injury claim for an escalator accident requires more than just simply filing out a form. Most property owners are covered by insurance. Insurance companies do not want to pay out any more money than they absolutely have to. If you are going to get the compensation you deserve you need to be ready to fully prove your case.
If you receive a settlement offer out of the blue form an insurance company, you should always have a knowledgeable personal injury lawyer review it before you agree to it. Chances are the insurance company is trying to low-ball you.
You will need to prove to the insurance company that there was negligence involved in the escalator accident. You will need to show that the accident caused your injuries. You will also need to show why you deserve the amount you are claiming.
Even if your case does not go to court, you will still need a hefty stack of evidence to convince an insurance company to give you a fair offer. You will need medical bills, pay stubs, doctor’s reports, proof of how your injuries limited your life while you recovered, and much more.
Obstacles to Getting Paid
There will be many obstacles in your path as you try and get the compensation you deserve. The property owner may try and blame other parties for the accident, You will need to do an investigation to make sure you know who all the responsible parties are.
You only have a short window to file a personal injury claim. If you miss your window you will not be able to collect anything. You may have to file a lawsuit to protect your rights even though you are still recovering or your investigation is still ongoing.
Property owners often try and remove any evidence as soon as possible after an escalator accident. It may be hard to get the proof you need for your claim without going to court and filing motions for documents and to conduct depositions of the people who fixed the escalator.
If you’ve been hurt in an escalator accident you need to get help to protect your rights and make sure you get the compensation you deserve.
Finding a personal injury lawyer can be tough. We can help. Let us connect you with a personal injury lawyer who knows how to handle escalator accidents. If you don’t take action soon, you may hurt your case or even lose your right to get compensated at all. Contact us today.