To most adults, escalators usually appear to be an unassuming method of transportation. They allow you to move from one floor to the next without having to climb stairs or wait for an elevator. Many children however, do not understand the dangers of playing on escalators. Each year, countless children are injured on escalators in shopping malls, airports, and office buildings.
Reports indicate that the majority of injuries were caused while the child was not holding the hand of an adult. It is important for parents and guardians to remember to properly supervise children while riding escalators to prevent such complications. Many of the unsupervised children were improperly riding the escalator when the injury occurred and were found to be running, walking, or sitting on the stairs while in motion.
Injuries also occur when the child attempts to step off the escalator, whether they are riding properly or not. Parents would be wise to monitor their children at all times, ensuring their safety. It is a prudent decision to hold your child’s hand, as is assisting them off the escalator at the end of the ride. Guardians should never let their children ride on the handrails, run or jump on the stairs, or sit down while riding an escalator.
Commonly reported escalator injuries to children include: blunt-force trauma from a fall, extremity entrapment, upper and lower extremity injuries, lacerations, avulsions, amputations, and digit fractures. Such horrific trauma can often be easily avoided by common sense precautions on the part of the parent and child.
Falls and entanglement are all-too-common escalator injuries. While adults may be able to better avoid such dangers, young children are at risk due to their curious nature and lack of attention span. It is up to the parent to provide adequate supervision for children under their care, but sometimes escalator harm occurs through no fault of the guardian or child.
Many of the reported injuries were sustained due to negligent maintenance, faulty equipment, and hazardous conditions in the environment. When escalators are not properly maintained, the risk of harm to an individual rises dramatically. Property owners should have consistent maintenance and repair schedules in place to ensure the safety of their guests and patrons.
For more information on escalator injuries, please visit the Madison personal injury lawyers at the offices of Habush Habush & Rottier, S.C. today.