The family of a hotel housekeeper who fell to her death in the hotel elevator shaft has filed a wrongful death lawsuit. The 65-year-old woman fell six stories at the Crockett Hotel on December 28 when she backed her housekeeper’s cart into the elevator. The elevator, however, wasn’t at the sixth floor as she had anticipated.
The victim’s daughter said the elevator had gotten stuck in the past, and recently someone was trapped for one hour. The hotel manager said the hotel was having problems with the elevators, but they had been serviced and were working properly. A spokeswoman for the Texas Department of Licensing and Regulation said a licensed inspector was supposed to examine elevators at the Crockett Hotel by December 14, but the inspection did not happen.
The day after the fatal accident, the elevator passed inspection, but the hotels’ owner could still be in violation of state regulations for failing to inspect them by the scheduled deadline. The service elevator will remain shut down until the investigation is complete.
The lawsuit alleges negligence on the part of the hotel owner. The plaintiff’s attorney said the lawsuit is intended, in part, to preserve the evidence until it is determined whether the hotel or elevator manufacturer was negligent. He sought a temporary injunction barring the companies from tampering with or destroying elevator parts until an investigation can be completed.
Elevator injuries are similar to premises liability lawsuits. The owner of a building is responsible for properly maintaining an elevator and if someone is injured as a result of negligent maintenance, the owner can be legally responsible for injuries. When a person is the victim of an accident, or a family has lost a loved one, directly related to the failure or malfunction of an elevator, they have the legal right to seek compensation for damages. For families who are faced with a similar lawsuit, being able to financially wait out the time it takes for your attorney to seek justice is paramount.
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