Typically when people think of premises liability, the thought of a person slipping and falling in a store or on a faulty sidewalk comes to mind. But landlords, employers, elevator companies, and even mass transit authorities can all be held liable for personal injuries that occur on their property or equipment they operate in North Carolina.
Each year people sustain injuries in North Carolina accidents that take place when the premises or equipment are improperly maintained or managed. These injuries can range from minor cuts or bruises, to major ones like broken or fractured limbs, or even something catastrophic like a brain injury or death.
Elevator accidents are one type of incident covered under North Carolina premises liability. In 2013, an audit revealed that only 3% of elevators with violations in North Carolina during the year prior had a follow-up inspection. The Bureau of Labor Statistics says that between 1992 and 2003, 60 fatalities involving elevator accidents took place. State regulations cover the safe construction, operation, and maintenance of elevators, but non-compliance with those regulations is a common occurrence.
Some common types of elevator accidents are sudden acceleration or deceleration of speed, sudden stops, stopping in between floors, failure to stop with the bottom of the elevator level with the floor, falling elevator, getting struck or caught between elevator doors, trip accidents, and fall accidents.
All property owners with elevators on their premises in North Carolina are obligated to ensure that the elevator is properly functioning and up-to-date on maintenance checks and repairs. Failure to do so can be grounds for North Carolina premises liability claims and lawsuits.