Patricia Price has sued John Peter Smith Hospital and Thyssenkrupp Elevators and claimed she was injured while riding in an elevator in September 2017. Ms. Price was in the hospital's main building when she entered the elevator on the fourth floor. While in the elevator, she was "violently jolted by the abrupt falling then stopping of the elevator." Ms. Price was taken to the hospital's emergency room and complained of injuries to her neck and back. The suit claims that the hospital had received prior complaints of the elevator malfunctioning prior to the incident involving Ms. Price.
With elevators, we often take them for granted. You might consider the danger of the door closing too soon. You might stick your hand out to hold it open, or just stand back and wait for the next one. Yet once you are inside the elevator box, most of us forget about the other dangers. We forget that it could get stuck, or worse, that it could plummet to the bottom floor. There are about 325 million elevator rides every day, with each elevator carrying about 20,000 people per year. Most of those rides end safely. But for some unfortunate passengers, poor elevator maintenance or defective elevator design can cause catastrophic injuries by riding the wrong elevator at the wrong time. Worse still, the general public is rarely aware of elevator problems until after serious injuries occur.
A jury awarded $2 million to a California man who suffered permanent spinal damage from an elevator malfunction. Before trial, the company-Schindler Elevator Corporation-offered to settle for $12,000.