Elevator‐Related Deaths

Document Type


Publication Date



Elevators are mechanical transportation devices used to move vertically between different levels of a building. When first developed, elevators lacked the safety features. When safety mechanisms were developed, elevators became a common feature of multistory buildings. Despite their well‐regarded safety record, elevators are not without the potential for danger of injury or death. Persons at‐risk for elevator‐related death include maintenance and construction workers, other employees, and those who are prone to risky behavior. Deaths may be related to asphyxia, blunt force, avulsion injuries, and various forms of environmental trauma. In this review, we report on 48 elevator‐related deaths that occurred in nine different medicolegal death investigation jurisdictions within the United States over an approximately 30‐year period. The data represents a cross‐section of the different types of elevator‐related deaths that may be encountered. The review also presents an overview of preventive strategies for the purpose of avoiding future elevator‐related fatalities.



Find in your library

Off-Campus WSU Users