Woman dies on subway stairs in station without elevator

Some West Virginia residents who have struggled with stairs when no elevator was available might have heard about a woman who died while trying to carry her baby's stroller down a flight of stairs in a New York City subway station. There was no elevator in the station, and this is the case for approximately three-fourths of the 472 subway stations throughout the city.

The accident drew further attention to an ongoing issue with a lack of accessibility throughout the subway stations. State and federal lawsuits filed in 2017 on behalf of the Center for Independence of the Disabled New York say that the MTA has violated the New York City Human Rights Law and the federal Americans With Disabilities Act. According to the director of CIDNY, other people are also at risk in subways without elevators, including people with luggage and those who do not use wheelchairs or walkers but who may be unsteady or who do not have the stamina for stair climbing.

The MTA has increased its rate of elevator installations, and by 2025, riders should not have to travel more than two stations without reaching one that has an elevator. However, this plan still leaves a number of stations inaccessible.

When a person is injured in an accident because the premises were unsafe, the owner or management might be held financially responsible. Premises liability law may cover someone slipping on a wet floor in a shop or a person injured because of faulty machinery in an amusement park. Compensation for an injured person or for surviving family members might be significant in paying medical bills and making up for lost income. An attorney may be able to assist in negotiating compensation or in litigation if necessary.

Source: Jezebel, "A Young Woman Fell and Died Trying to Carry Her Baby's Stroller In a Subway Station With No Elevator," Anna Merlan, 1/29/2019

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