Escalators are part of our daily lives, and most people do not think twice about stepping on to them. However, shocking statistics from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics and Consumer Product Safety Commission show that over 17,000 people every year are injured on escalators and 30 people die. Escalator accidents are more common than most people think. If you were injured due to an accident involving an escalator, here are some ways to ensure your legal rights are protected.
Escalators Have Safety Standards
Escalators must adhere to strict standards established by both the American Society of Mechanical Engineers and the American National Standards Institute Escalator Committee. While these rigorous standards require that escalators are maintained properly and run safely, unfortunately, many escalators in the United States are out of compliance with these regulations.
Premises Liability Law
There are three different ways you may be able to pursue a claim for any injuries you suffered on an escalator. The first is through premises liability law. If the owner of the building or property knew or should have known that there were dangerous conditions associated with the escalator and failed to correct or fix those hazards, they may be liable for your injuries. Additionally, if they failed to follow a maintenance schedule required by the product manufacturer that resulted in your injury, they may also be responsible for your injuries.
Product Liability Law
In some cases, the owner may not be responsible for your injuries suffered on an escalator. Instead, the manufacturer of a part or component of the escalator is responsible for your injuries due to some manufacturing defect of the escalator. In these cases, strict liability laws will apply to the manufacturer, which means that a victim must only prove that the product was in the stream of commerce to be used by consumers and had a defective part or component. Any malfunctioning part of an escalator could lead to a serious injury. If an investigation determines that some manufactured part of the escalator caused your injury, you will be able to bring a claim against the manufacturer directly.
Personal Injury Law
Whether or not you decide to file a claim against the owner of the building or the manufacturer, you will need to build a strong case. An independent investigation may be needed, along with witness statements if possible. Additionally, always seek medical attention immediately following any type of accident, not only for your own health but also to help you later if you decide to pursue a claim to receive compensation for your injuries.
Contact an Experienced Personal Injury Attorney
If you suffered a personal injury related to a malfunctioning escalator, you may be facing substantial medical bills, lost wages, and pain and suffering. These types of cases can be challenging to develop legally due to their complexity involving manufacturers and regulations regarding how this equipment should safely operate. Contact one of our experienced Columbia personal injury attorneys at The Stanley Law Group at 803-799-4700 to schedule a free consultation regarding your escalator accident and how to ensure you receive the compensation you deserve.