According to reports on the incident, there may have been 35 or more people on the rooftop partying at the time the stairway collapsed.
After this victim and others had to be rescued from the building by firefighters, the apartment manager was cited for illegal occupancy and failing to maintain the property. According to New York personal injury lawyer Kenneth A. Wilhelm, it is fortunate things weren’t a lot worse. “The manner in which this stairway collapsed, a lot more people could have been injured had they been there at the time. This was an extremely dangerous situation.”
Stairway accidents often result in serious injuries that require a lengthy recovery time, Wilhelm says. “These injury victims end up having to take more time away from work and pay out-of-pocket costs for treatments such as physical therapy or chiropractic care. In cases where catastrophic injuries occur, victims may never be able to work or earn a livelihood again.”
That’s why the monetary awards for these types of injuries are so high.
“Property owners and managers have a responsibility to fully maintain their premises, Wilhelm said. “This includes conducting routine inspections and ensuring that everything is in good working order.”
It’s also a good idea to educate tenants at orientation about occupancy standards that apply throughout the building.
American Apartment Owners Association offers discounts on products and services for all your property management needs. Find out more at www.joinaaoa.org.