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Escalators present serious dangers to some individuals

Getting to upper floors of buildings requires the use of stairs, but some buildings have escalators or elevators. While there are more elevators than escalators, the rate of escalator injuries is around 15 times greater. Some of these accidents are because of improper usage, but others are due to problems with the escalators.

Buildings that utilize escalators must ensure that they are keeping them safe. Failing to ensure that they are properly maintained and failing to have customers use the escalators in a safe method can lead to serious accidents and injuries. In the most tragic cases, people have died using escalators.

Two primary forms of accidents

There are two types of accidents that are common on escalators – falls and entrapments. Falls include people falling over the side of the escalator or down it. Entrapment means that some part of the body, clothing, shoes, hair or accessories become caught in the moving components of the machine.

The type of accident can often provide insight into what happened, but it doesn't provide definitive answers. Each incident will have to be evaluated individually so that a determination of what happened can be made.

Age is a risk factor

There are two age groups at the highest risk of having an accident on an escalator: children who are no older than 5 and those who are at least 65 years old. For the younger age group, it is possible for an injury to be due to an adult dropping the child or from the child slipping. In the older group, the primary cause is slipping or imbalance. When adults younger than 65 are involved in an escalator accident, there is a chance that impairment is the cause.

Types of injuries

The most common type of injury is a head injury, but others happen far too often as well. An entrapment might lead to lacerations, broken bones or amputations. Falls can lead to these medical tragedies as well as spinal cord injuries. Death is possible in all escalator-related accidents, but it is more common in falls, especially in those occurring on upper floors.

A person injured in an escalator accident in White Plains, New York, will likely need medical care, which can be financially costly and require time off work. These effects of the accident might lead the victim to file a personal injury claim, which seeks to resolve the financial devastation.

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