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Elevator Accidents at Construction Sites in Queens

An elevator is one of the last places you want to get stuck. Imagine the feeling of claustrophobia in that confined space. The feeling that it is not possible to go anywhere. Forcing open the elevator door and seeing only emptiness and the rails from which it hangs. 

This could be an anecdote or an uncomfortable moment if it does not turn into an accident. But when it becomes an accident involving injuries and possible negligence, it is a more complex case.  

In an accident, the elevator can fall from a considerable height or derail. Consider the potential risks that could arise on a construction site. These risks may involve people moving around in various areas or the presence of flammable materials nearby. 

Portable elevators are often used in camps or construction sites to assist workers in moving heavy objects. A fall could also cause concrete blocks or timbers to fall. This could affect both the person inside the elevator and those nearby. 

Queens has not been free of events of this nature. There have been several events involving construction workers who fatally lost their lives due to an elevator-related accident. These events were reported by the media at the time. The company may have been negligent in training its staff to handle situations such as stuck elevators or regular technical checks. This lack of training could have prevented breakdowns that may lead to deadly incidents. This could have prevented any breakdowns that could result in a deadly incident. 

It is normal for these events to be considered as a possible risk factor in construction camps. There are usually manuals or contingency plans on how to act in these cases. In addition, there is specialized equipment that should be used in compliance with the regulations governing Queens, New York. 

Normally, these regulations are intended to prevent or, in any case, compensate victims of elevator accident events that are linked to some type of negligence or could have been avoided if the company developing the construction contract had taken the necessary preventive measures. 

However, we cannot say it is always the company's responsibility. Sometimes there is also human error on the part of the worker or ignorance in assessing the level of seriousness of a reckless attitude. Suddenly, some workers were not able to internalize the contingency plans, or the inductions they received were not enough to raise their awareness. 

Distractions can strike construction workers for various reasons: bad sleep, excessive fatigue, intense weather, or even the use of electronic equipment in the workplace. That is why a legal process of this nature involves a thorough investigation to determine legal liability. Once it has been identified who is legally responsible for certain facts, a process to evaluate possible compensations begins. In the case of elevator accidents in construction projects, these compensations may vary due to many factors. 

These could be factors such as the level of injury, short and long-term damage caused, negligence in operating machinery, being under the influence of a substance, failure to provide appropriate training, or omitting details on the use of appropriate equipment. All elements could determine the outcome of a legal investigation. By contacting us, you will initiate an account of what happened, and we will be able to conclude which path would be the most appropriate for your case. 

We at The Ward Law Group are sharing valuable information with our community in Queens so that you have some ideas on how to proceed in such an eventuality. We want to make it easier for you to process these events. That is why we have identified the most relevant points surrounding these types of accidents and want to share them with you. Elevators should no longer be tools that generate fatalities but elements that contribute to a key sector, such as the construction sector in New York. 

The importance of an elevator accident attorney for victims of elevator accidents. 

Can you imagine having to deal with complex legal topics all by yourself? Learning procedures that may have taken a lawyer a year to internalize? It is difficult to go through the world of law without first having the necessary notions to know how to deal with each stage of the process.  

That is why, at The Ward Law, we always recommend you be accompanied by a Queen's elevator accident lawyer from our team. He will be in charge of transmitting you the best legal alternative for your case; at the same time, he will indicate or train you in the areas in which you should be prepared to take the case to court. 

You could lose valuable time dealing with these aspects on your own. We have been able to group the most relevant points that justify the fact of having relevant legal support for these types of cases: 

  1. Navigating Complex Laws: Elevator accident cases often involve intricate laws and regulations. Expert attorneys can decipher the legal complexities and ensure compliance with relevant statutes. 
  2. Determining Liability: Specialized lawyers can investigate the incident, identify liable parties, and hold them accountable for negligence or inadequate safety measures. 
  3. Maximizing Compensation: Elevator accidents can result in significant physical, emotional, and financial burdens. Expert representation aims to secure comprehensive compensation for medical expenses, lost wages, and pain and suffering. 
  4. Proving Negligence: Attorneys possess the expertise to gather evidence, such as maintenance records and inspection reports, to establish the negligence that led to the accident. 
  5. Negotiating with Insurers: Experienced lawyers negotiate with insurance companies, ensuring victims receive fair settlements that address the full extent of their damages. 
  6. Understanding Elevator Regulations: Elevators are subject to specific regulations. Lawyers knowledgeable in these regulations can assess whether elevator safety standards were violated. 
  7. Advocating for Victims: Skilled legal representation acts as a voice for victims, advocating for their rights and well-being while navigating the complexities of legal proceedings. 
  8. Preventing annoying tactics: Legal professionals protect victims from pressure tactics used by liable parties or their representatives. 
  9. Ensuring Timely Filing: Elevator accidents have time limitations for filing claims. Expert attorneys ensure claims are filed within the stipulated timeframes to avoid losing the right to compensation. 
  10. Expertise in Negotiation and Litigation: Specialized lawyers are equipped to escalate the case to court, armed with the expertise to present a strong case on behalf of the victim. 

Differences between General Personal Injury Lawyers and Those Specializing in Construction Site Elevator Accidents 

The difference between hiring a general personal injury attorney and a construction site elevator accident specialist can have a big impact on how well your case turns out. Here are the main differences between the two: 

Industry Insight: 

  • General Personal Injury Lawyers: While capable, they might lack in-depth knowledge of construction site complexities and elevator-specific regulations. 
  • Specialized Elevator Accident Lawyers: Possess extensive knowledge of construction site environments, elevator safety protocols, and industry standards, allowing for a nuanced approach. 

Case Expertise

  • General Personal Injury Lawyers: Handle a wide range of cases, potentially spreading their focus thin across different areas of law. 
  • Specialized Elevator Accident Lawyers: Concentrate exclusively on elevator accident cases, enabling them to delve deep into the intricacies of these incidents and offer tailored strategies. 

Regulatory Mastery

  • General Personal Injury Lawyers: May need time to familiarize themselves with elevator regulations specific to construction sites. 
  • Specialized Elevator Accident Lawyers: Are well-versed in elevator-related regulations, ensuring no crucial aspect is overlooked in building a compelling case. 

Evidence Collection

  • General Personal Injury Lawyers: Might need more time and effort to gather relevant evidence, considering the unique aspects of elevator accidents. 
  • Specialized Elevator Accident Lawyers: Know precisely what evidence is pivotal in elevator accident cases and can efficiently collect and analyze it. 

Negotiation and Litigation Skills

  • General Personal Injury Lawyers: Possess negotiation and litigation skills, but their experience might not be tailored to the intricacies of elevator accidents. 
  • Specialized Elevator Accident Lawyers: Are seasoned in negotiating and litigating elevator accident cases, maximizing the potential for favorable outcomes. 

Industry Connections

  • General Personal Injury Lawyers: May not have established relationships with experts familiar with elevators' technical aspects. 
  • Specialized Elevator Accident Lawyers: Have a network of experts to call upon, enhancing the quality of evidence and insights brought to the case. 

Track Record

  • General Personal Injury Lawyers: May have a diverse track record with varying degrees of success in elevator accident cases. 
  • Specialized Elevator Accident Lawyers: Typically boast a consistent track record of successfully handling elevator accident cases, showcasing their expertise. 

Frequency and prevalence of elevator accidents at construction sites in NYC.  

New York City, which is well-known for its skyscrapers, experiences an incredible ratio of elevator-related accidents involving members of the general public as well as accidents involving employees who use elevators as part of their jobs. A recent statistical analysis shows that, compared to workers in other professions, those in the construction industry are injured and killed in elevator accidents more frequently. 

Between 2019 and 2022, 160 construction workers were killed in fatal elevator accidents – more than double in comparison with other industries that involve using elevators as part of their daily activities at work.  

The risk of death was highest among those who installed or repaired elevators, with a fatality rate of approximately 20 per 100,000 full-time employees. Overall, 35 deaths related to elevators occurred among workers. 

One-third of all elevator-related fatalities involved workers working for businesses with fewer than ten employees, and 25% of workers killed were under the age of 35. 

These indicators point to the need to generate adequate prevention in order to mitigate the risks that exist in the handling of elevators in workplaces in Queens. 

How a lawyer can assist victims in seeking compensation for injuries and damages. 

Certainly, fair compensation is what every victim of these types of events seeks in order to repair, at least in the economic aspect, the damages caused. At the same time, they seek to remedy the time lost, the days they were unable to work due to injuries, among other effects such as post-traumatic stress level or the sensations that might be hard to process after facing death.  

Have you ever wondered what it takes for a lawyer's strategy to be successful in increasing compensation? That is not such a simple question to answer, but we would like to mention certain relevant points that influence the level of compensation that will be obtained: 

  1. Thorough Case Evaluation: Expert elevator accident lawyers assess the details of the incidents, analyzing evidence, witness statements, and medical records to build a comprehensive case. 
  2. Comprehensive Documentation: Lawyers gather and organize all relevant documentation, including medical bills, treatment records, and lost wage statements, to present a comprehensive view of the victim's damages. 
  3. Calculating Future Costs: By projecting future medical expenses, ongoing treatments, and potential lost earning capacity, lawyers ensure compensation accounts for long-term consequences. 
  4. Expert Testimony: Elevator accident lawyers collaborate with industry experts, such as engineers or medical professionals, to provide credible testimony that substantiates the extent of damages. 
  5. Negotiation Expertise: Seasoned lawyers employ negotiation tactics to engage with insurers and responsible parties, leveraging the strength of the case to secure the highest compensation possible. 
  6. Quantifying Pain and Suffering: Beyond tangible damages, lawyers quantify intangible losses like pain, suffering, and emotional distress, enhancing the overall compensation amount. 
  7. Establishing Liability: Lawyers delve deep into the circumstances leading to the accident, pinpointing responsible parties and demonstrating their negligence or liability. 
  8. Litigation Preparedness: In the event of a trial, specialized lawyers possess the litigation skills and courtroom experience necessary to present a compelling case to judges and juries. 

Final Thoughts on an Unfortunate Event 

Finally, we would like to close this brief summary of these unfortunate events with a reflection on how to deal with difficult times. Our Christian values always lead us to look to the bible for answers to every situation. Isaiah 40:31 (NIV) says: "But those who hope in the Lord will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary; they will walk and not be faint." 

Here are some ways individuals can apply biblical teachings to overcome unexpected hardships: 

  1. Embrace Challenges with Resilience: 
    • Just as gold is refined through fire, challenges can refine us. Embrace trials as opportunities for growth and spiritual maturity. 
  2. Lean on Faith and Hope: 
    • Trust that God's plans are greater than our immediate circumstances. Hold onto hope and faith, knowing that brighter days lie ahead. 
  3. Seek Support and Community: 
    • The Bible encourages community and mutual support. Surround yourself with loved ones who can provide comfort, encouragement, and prayer. 
  4. Practice Gratitude: 
    • Amid adversity, cultivating gratitude can shift our perspective. Acknowledge the blessings amidst challenges and focus on the positive aspects of life. 
  5. Learn Patience and Endurance: 
    • Trials teach us patience and the art of enduring. Understand that challenges are a part of life's journey, and resilience emerges from patient endurance. 
  6. Transform Pain into Purpose: 
    • Just as Joseph's story in Genesis reveals, hardships can lead to unexpected blessings and opportunities. Trust that God can use your pain for a greater purpose. 
  7. Find Peace in God's Promises: 
    • The Bible is replete with promises of comfort, restoration, and healing. Let God's promises provide solace and assurance during difficult times. 

At The Ward Law Group, we will serve you from the moment you come to our office to tell us about your case. Don't face these times alone. Rely on our experts and their human qualities to lighten the burdens of the road. 

Together we will find the justice you deserve. You will be better off at the end of the road. You will smile with your loved ones. And we will see a safer Queens for everyone.