New York City Elevator Accidents

New York City Elevator Accidents

Elevator Accidents

Elevator Accidents are common and every day, millions of people in New York City  take elevators to access their homes and offices. We expect that the elevator will function properly and assist us in safely reaching our destination. However, on occasion, something goes wrong, and the results can be catastrophic. Just this week, a Brooklyn baby fell down the elevator shaft of her apartment building when the elevator door opened but, unbeknownst to the baby’s mother, the elevator car was not there.

New York City has its own specialized laws governing elevator installation, maintenance and inspection, because far too often elevator accidents are preventable with proper preventative maintenance and inspection programs.

New York City Elevator Laws

The law requires New York City building owners to maintain their elevator equipment in a reasonably safe condition. This includes the requirement that landlords hire properly trained professionals to inspect, maintain and service their elevators on a regular basis. The failure to do so often leads to elevator accidents.

In accordance with the New York City Building Code, elevators located within the five boroughs must be inspected and tested twice annually. Annual inspections are performed by a contracted inspection agency on behalf of the Department of Buildings (DOB). These inspections are usually unannounced and building owners have to provide inspectors access so they can complete the required inspections/tests.

If an inspector is unable to gain access, he/she will post a notice in a visible location with instructions for rescheduling the visit. Category testing is performed and witnessed by approved independent third-party agencies licensed by the DOB. Building owners are responsible for hiring an approved inspection agency.

The following inspection and test cycle is now required:

  • Category One (Cat-1): No load safety test performed between January 1st and December 31st each year;
  • Category Three (Cat-3): Performed on water hydraulic elevators only every three years from date of installation; &
  • Category Five (Cat-5): Performed with rated load and speed every five years from date of installation.

For a copy of the rules see

New York City Elevator Lawyer

Blake G. Goldfarb has years of experience representing victims of elevator accidents. He has handled elevator accident cases involving:

  1. Misleveling
  2. Sudden acceleration or deceleration
  3. Door or car entrapment
  4. Overspeed conditions
  5. Safety device failure

In 2012, Blake negotiated a $425,000 settlement for his 55-year-old Bronx client who was injured in a free falling elevator, causing severe spinal injuries and urological dysfunction. Blake also successfully handled the appeal in that case. You can read the decision here.

Blake G. Goldfarb is a NYC elevator accident attorney who advocates for his clients’ full financial recovery by thoroughly and aggressively preparing your case for trial.

If you were injured or a loved one died from an elevator accident, please contact Blake toll-free at 1-844-672-5253 or at to discuss your case. Blake offers a free initial consultation and does not charge a fee unless he recovers money for you.