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Common Reasons for Elevator Injuries: Door Entrapment

We’ve all been there – you’re rushing to get to the elevator as it’s closing and call for someone inside to hold the elevator. A lot of the time instead of pressing the “open door” button, someone will stick their hand out and push back the doors. Typically, we don’t think of these closing doors as dangerous. Most elevators will stop closing if there is something obstructing the doorway. But, this is not always the case. In addition, doors can malfunction and close on a person trying to get in or out of the elevator. On this page, you can learn more about door entrapment, when it is your fault, and when it is the result of a malfunction.

Your Liability

There are a few situations in which you can be held responsible for any injuries that result from door entrapment. This might happen in the example mentioned above. If you purposefully stick body parts in the doors and you know that they are closing, you might be able to recover some damages. But, the other party will argue that your recklessness caused your injury. For this reason, you probably won’t receive full compensation for your injuries.

Make sure that you do not stick body parts in front of the doors when you know they are closing. This might include holding the elevator for someone else, trying to slip into the elevator as doors are closing, or even playing “chicken” with the door as it closes. If you need to hold the elevator doors open, using the “hold open” button on the controls. If you are rushing to get onto an elevator while the doors are closing, it is best to just wait for the next one.

Other People’s Liability

Door entrapment may occur for another reason that has nothing to do with your recklessness. In most cases, these issues result from a door malfunction. One example of this would be door protection devices that stop working. Another common example is if the door closing force is improperly adjusted. Finally, consider improperly adjusted speed of closing doors or issues with the door protection device reacting quickly enough to stop closing when there is something obstructing the doorway. Any malfunctions that led to these kinds of issues could be the fault of the owner, the maintenance crew, or the company that manufactured the equipment.

Next Steps

If you think that you have a personal injury case based on door entrapment, you need to prove it. In order to do this, it is important to gather additional information about the elevator. For example, consider:

  • What type of elevator you used.
  • What type of doors were on the elevator.
  • The type of door protection on the elevator.
  • The type of door operator.
  • Distance between inner and outer edges of the doors.

Having this information can help determine what went wrong with the elevator to cause your injury. If you would like to discuss your injury in greater detail, as well as get more information about door entrapment, contact our office. You can speak with one of our attorneys and get the answers that you need about your case.