Escalator or Lift Accident Claims Guide – How Much Compensation Can I Claim?
By Stephen Hudson. Last Updated 7th April 2022. Lifts are part of many people’s daily, or weekly routine, as are escalators. From riding the escalator in our local supermarket or shopping centre to getting in the lift every day at work, we rely on these mechanical operations to get us where we want to be. Some are even present in multistorey car parks. However, what happens when something goes wrong? Escalator or lift injury claims may be possible if you are injured in an accident involving either and it was caused by another party’s negligence.
It is often a fear for people that they’ll get stuck in the lift, but the fact is, when something like that does actually happen – and it can – this can cause more than a few moments worry before we are rescued or the lift begins working again. The same is true of escalator accidents.
Whether you’ve been injured as a result of a faulty mechanism, or lack of maintenance on these important but potentially risky mechanical transport units, or you’ve had a slip, trip or fall on an escalator which was caused by uneven matting or a spillage, the consequences can be awful. Should this have been due to negligence or fault of a company or individual, then you may be able to claim for compensation.
Get advice and other support with escalator or lift injury claims
Here at Legal Expert, we have experience handling lift injury claims, and we’re here to bring you the facts about elevator or escalator injury claims. Please read on to learn more about how accidents involving escalator or lifts may occur because of another party’s negligence. We’ll also talk you through the steps to follow if you have evidence to support a potential injury claim following an escalator or lift accident. If you’d like to ask an advisor any questions about things such as the personal injury claims time limit, then you can ring 0800 073 8804. Alternatively, you can reach us online using our claim online form or our 24/7 live chat service.
Select A Section
- A Guide to Lift and Escalator Injury Claims
- What is an escalator or lift injury?
- Common causes of lift injuries
- How do escalator accidents happen?
- Lift or escalator injury at work – can I make a claim?
- Slip, trip and fall injuries in lifts and escalators – can I claim?
- Can I get compensation for being stuck in a lift?
- Physical and Mental effects of lifts and escalator accidents
- Lift injury statistics
- Lift and Escalator Injuries – What can be claimed for?
- Compensation calculator for lift and escalator injuries
- No Win No Fee Lift Injury Claims
- Claiming with Legal Expert – What’s the difference?
- Call us to claim lift or escalator injury compensation
- Helpful Resources
With over a quarter of a million lifts within the UK (estimated) and each one making several trips up and down a building daily, taking a journey in a lift is somewhat commonplace. The same is true with escalators; many of us think nothing of stepping onto a travelling walkway to take us to the next floor of the supermarket, shopping centre or workplace. But this is not always the smooth transition between floors that we expect. Lift accident claims and escalator accident claims come about when things go wrong on an escalator or lift, and sometimes the consequences can be horrendous.
From slipping and falling down an escalator, or being thrown from one when it malfunctions, to becoming trapped in a lift or being injured when it stops suddenly, there is no end of injuries you could incur. The worst thing about being injured in this way is if there is, or was something that should have been done to prevent the accident from happening. It is common for people who have been injured in this way to take action and launch lift or escalator injury claim, not just to compensate them for losses financially, but also to ensure that the building owner or operators sits up and taken notice to prevent the same thing from happening again.
Common questions we’re often asked are ‘Can you claim for being stuck in a lift?’ or ‘Can you claim from being thrown from an escalator?’ The simplest way to explain this type of injury is by explaining that any accident that is someone else’s fault that leads you to becoming either mentally or physically injured whilst in a lift or on an escalator could give rise to escalator or lift injury claims. Whether this is due to mechanical failure, lack of proper maintenance or otherwise negligent behaviour by either the manufacturer or the building owner, i.e. the person responsible for the maintenance of the lift or escalator, you should be able to hold someone liable and make an escalator or lift injury claim.
There are a huge variety of different injuries that could occur as a result of lift accidents. Some of these can be found below, as the most common, but if your cause is not listed, then it would still give rise to a claim if it were someone else fault. Potential issues can include:
- Lift mechanism malfunction
- Trip hazards within or just outside of the lift
- Emergency brake failure
- Sudden stopping of lift
- Emergency stop failure leading to a limb being pulled into the mechanism
- Door malfunction
If you are unsure of whether you have a claim, do not hesitate to ring us.
While fully functional escalators are usually safe when used correctly, an accident and injuries could potentially occur if they develop a fault. A sudden stopping, even if it does not propel you off the escalator, could cause you to bump into the edges, or fall down a step or two, perhaps even falling into another person.
Other causes of injury could be:
- Missing teeth on the escalator track
- Giving way of panel
- Loose or missing screws
- Gap between walkway and escalator floor
Again, should your injury not be on this list, it doesn’t mean you won’t have a claim. Simply contact the team at Legal Expert and we’ll clarify your position.
Using a lift at work is something many of us do every day, and normally this is without incident. However, if you’re subject to a lift injury or escalator injury at work while carrying out your normal duties, this is certainly something that may lead you to have time off work. You may even lose out on pay. If this is the case, and your employer is seen to be liable (they have a duty to protect you as much as possible from harm while at work) then you might be able to make accident at work on lift or escalator claims.
If your employer is responsible for building maintenance, then it is likely you’d be claiming against them. If it is your business’ landlord, then it might be a little more complex. However, whoever is liable, you should certainly give thought to claiming. It is worth mentioning that your employer, and your business’ landlord should both have insurance that covers them when making compensation payouts, and your employer can’t legally treat you any differently if you choose to claim against them.
Lifts and escalators are manufactured to be safe, but they do have certain features within them that can be customised to a certain extent and this includes the flooring.
Can you sue for falling on an escalator?
If you’ve been injured on an escalator by slipping, tripping or falling purely because of an accident on your part, then it is unlikely you would be able to claim any compensation. But if the flooring is loose, posing a trip hazard, or there has been a spillage that has caused you to slip, then the likelihood is that you’ll have a valid claim. In terms of lift injury claims, the same is true. If the matting, tiling or flooring material poses a trip slip hazard in any way, then you should look at filing a claim.
Often a person’s worst fear, being stuck in a lift can have severe mental health connotations, and it is hardly surprising that once someone has been stuck in a lift, they may not want to get in one again. This can have a marked affect on how they live their lift after this kind of an incident. If you have been stuck in a lift, claiming compensation might be something to consider. If it were due to lift malfunction due to either poor maintenance practices or manufacturer error, then you may well be able to go forward with a claim to help recover costs and maybe even pay for counselling to overcome the mental effects of your entrapment. Sometimes a complaint letter for being stuck in elevator isn’t enough – you need to turn being stuck in elevator into legal action in order to prevent the same thing from happening to someone else.
Being stuck in a lift even for a short space of time or injured on an escalator can cause no end of mental health problems, even if you have never suffered from fear of lifts or escalators before. It is not uncommon for those injured or trapped to suffer from anxiety, depression and some symptoms of PTSD after an event of this sort. Our physical and psychological compensation calculator later on this guide may help give you an idea of how much of an award you would likely receive for psychological injury.
As far as the physical injuries go, the list could go on forever. From broken fingers from crushing in a lift door to whiplash-type injuries from the sudden stopping and forceful movement, to broken bones and worse if you’ve fallen from an escalator, there are a whole host of different injuries. The soft tissue injury compensation calculator we have provided further down this page should give some idea of personal injury claims payouts for common lift and escalator injuries.
Figures provided by the Health and Safety Executive reveal that between 2002-2011, there have been 266 persons involved in injury relating to lifts and escalators, with a further 182 relating to accidents within the shaft of the lift as well as service ducts. While this figure seems quite high, it would be prudent to mention that there are over a quarter of a million lifts within the UK, and they make a number of trips daily – meaning that this figure is not quite as high as it seems when you look at it in proportion with the number of trips taken. This is why lift accident news is not often in the papers, or on TV. However, if you have been injured in this way, this is of little comfort, especially if the accident was not due to your own fault.
Payouts for compensation don’t just include money for your actual injury. There are a number of other factors taken into account when calculating your full award. These can include, but are not limited to:
Earnings – if you’ve lost earnings or are likely to in the future as a direct consequence of your lift or escalator injury, then an award should include this.
Adaptations – If your home must be adapted for wheelchair use or other accessibility issues, then you might find this included in your award
Carer’s claims – Should you have required care in your home for daily activities you used to be able to do alone, then your carer can submit a claim
Travel/Medical Costs – Parking, prescriptions, fuel, mobility aids, all of these can be included.
Of course, general damages is usually a large part of your award too – which is the payment for the specific injury. It is calculated based on the review of a medical report from a medical professional that your solicitors will arrange an appointment within the order that they can assess you.
When you are looking for a lift injury claim calculator, you’ll likely find one that gives you a specific amount for the injury, such as a shoulder injury compensation amount with perhaps an estimate for the sort of expenses you’ve incurred as well. The thing is, as handy as these things look, they’re unlikely to be very accurate, as cases differ so much in terms of injuries sustained, and the prognosis for recovery. What we’ve done here instead is put together information based on compensation guidelines for personal injury.
This involves what has typically been awarded for compensation for being stuck in a lift and other escalator and lift cases in terms of previous claims for some specific injuries. What this will do is give you a guide as to how much you could be awarded for your specific injury.
The figures in the table below have been taken from the latest edition (2019) of the Judicial College Guidelines (JCG). This official document is made up of a list of injuries and the potential value of the final personal injury compensation amount. This is the portion of your payout that’s calculated by legal professionals to account for the physical pain and mental suffering associated with your injuries.
|What injury have you had?||Typical lift injury or escalator injury payout bracket||More Information|
|Psychological damages (severe)||£51,460 to £108,620||The prognosis will determine the payout amount but this is for those people who cannot go on to live the life they did before previous to the incident.|
|Psychological damages (moderately acute)||£17,900 to £51,460||Slightly more optimistic prognosis but lasting effects on day to day living|
|Psychological damages (moderate)||£5,500 to £17,900||Marked improvements in the personÕs ability to go on with day to day life by the time the claim is concluded|
|Psychological damages that are less acute||£1,440 to £5,500||Sleep effects, length of suffering etc. will be calculated.|
|Injury/ies to the neck moderate||£23,460 to £36,120||Length of pain and suffering will be analysed as well as prognosis for recovery|
|Minor damages to wrists||£3,310 to £4,450||Usually these are damages to tissue and will heal pretty quickly.|
|Minor head injury||£2,070 to £11,980||Lasting a few weeks.|
|Severe shoulder injury||£18,020 to £45,070||Brachial plexus damage.|
|Mental anguish||£4,380||Fear of impending death.|
We could not list all lift or escalator injury types here, but if yours isn’t one of those listed above, we can give you an idea of typical payouts for your injury if you call us.
Claiming for a lift compensation claim or escalator malfunction claim does not have to come with risk to your bank balance. You may think legal assistance is expensive, but in truth, this is not necessarily the case, and you wouldn’t have to pay upfront to begin escalator or lift injury claims when you contact us. Here at Legal Expert, we ensure that the personal injury solicitors we can provide to you work on a No Win No Fee basis. This means you won’t be required to pay your solicitor unless your claim is successful. If you are awarded compensation, your lawyer is paid via an amount taken from the final amount. This is legally capped so that the majority of your compensation is protected.
At Legal Expert, we make it easy and simple to claim escalator or stuck in a lift compensation. First of all, we’ll talk to you in-depth about what’s happened, answering any questions like can I sue for being stuck in an elevator, or detailed PTSD compensation examples for you – whatever you’d like to know. We want to know whether your claim is likely to be valid – and if we don’t feel you’d have a convincing case, we will let you know.
We wouldn’t want you to have to go through the process of claiming only to be disappointed, after all. Once we’ve ascertained that your claim is likely to result in a payout, we will explain how the entire process works, so that you can be sure of what is happening. We can then provide a personal injury solicitor for lift injury claims that have experience in this arena.
You can then be sure you’ve got a good solicitor to take away the stress of claiming. If you want to think it over before going ahead, or you’re not sure you’re ready, we’ll ensure that we don’t push you. This is your lift injury claim, or escalator injury claim, so your decision and your right to choose whether to claim at all. Our advice comes with no obligation, so you are free as always to take the path that best suits you – we are simply here to advise.
We feel that this no pressure no stress approach to personal injury claims is what sets us apart from others in this field. Our legally trained staff have helped many people in your situation, and you’re never just another case to us; you’re a person who has been through a lot and we’re here to help you get the best outcome. Why not call us and see what the difference is when you speak to us here at Legal Expert?
We have made it incredibly easy to contact us, whether you have lift injury claims or would like advice on a personal injury claim of another nature. Whether you want to know what figures a mental health compensation calculator would bring up, or a scar compensation calculator, or you’d like to know more about stuck in elevator lawsuit examples, we can help. All you need to do is contact us via one of the following means:
- You can call our helpline – 0800 073 8804
- Our email – firstname.lastname@example.org
- Our contact form
- Or, you can use our online chat box in the bottom right corner.
Whichever way you’d prefer to get in touch – we look forward to hearing from you.
Below, you’ll find a few links that might help you even more than the guide above. These contain information relevant to your lift injury. We hope you find them of interest.
Our guide to work accident claims should give you more information about claiming against employers.
Other ways you can be injured in a public place.
Our general guide to the process.
The NHS PTSD Page may help if you’re suffering after your experience.
If your accident was captured on CCTV then you could use it as evidence.
Find out how someone else could make a claim on your behalf.
Would you like to speak to an advisor about escalator or lift injury claims? If so, you are welcome to contact the Legal Expert team using the contact details included in this guide.