Elevator Safety Mechanisms
Elevators have become a normal feature of everyday life in the United States. From shopping malls to office buildings to multi-level grocery stores, it seems that elevators are everywhere we go and everywhere we need them to be.
While elevator systems are carefully constructed and designed, like any machine, they are capable of breaking and malfunctioning, especially when the workers contracted to assemble and repair them fail to do their jobs appropriately. Every year in the United States there are an approximate 17,000 injuries connected with elevators and escalators and 30 fatalities.
To prevent harm and injury, however, most modern elevators are equipped with a variety of safety mechanisms that make elevator riding as safe as possible.
The first and primary safety features in elevators are the cables that hold the elevator itself. While many films display these cables as flimsy and capable of snapping with almost no effort, they are actually incredibly strong and there are four to eight cables attached to each elevator car. They are made of steel lengths of cable which are wrapped around one another and are strong enough to carry the weight of the elevator and its counterweights.
In the event of an accident severe enough to damage all of an elevator’s cables, there are back-up braking systems installed that will slow the elevator down if it reaches dangerous speeds. These brakes will grab onto the elevator’s rails and will bring the elevator to a stop before it hits the ground.
Finally, the doors of an elevator are an important feature in preventing accidents. These doors are mechanized and designed to only open when the elevator is at a floor opening, which prevents people from exposure to an empty elevator shaft.
If you or someone you know has been the unfortunate victim of an elevator accident, contact a Cincinnati personal injury lawyer at Stepleton Dugan, LLC today at 513-321-7733 and schedule a consultation.