Lift / Escalator Accident Claims Guide – How To Claim Compensation For A Lift Accident Or Escalator Accident

By Cat Troi. Last Updated 1st June 2022Welcome to our guide to lift accident claims and escalator accident claims. If you’re injured in a lift accident or an escalator accident, you could be entitled to claim compensation for your injuries if the accident was caused by some form of negligence.

In this guide, we’ll explain what types of lift accident claim could be possible, why somebody else may be to blame and how much compensation you could be entitled to.

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Lift accident claims guide

If you’d like to discuss any injury caused by lift or elevator accidents, why not give us a call on 0800 073 8801 today. It cost nothing to enquire, and you’re under no obligation to proceed to lift accident claims.

Alternatively, if you’d like to find out more about when you could make a No Win No Fee claim, then please carry on reading.

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A Guide To Lift Accident And Escalator Accident Claims

If you’ve suffered an injury caused by somebody else while using a lift or escalator, then you might be entitled to compensation for your injuries. There are many types of claim that are possible, including a stuck in a lift accident, an accident where you were crushed in a lift, a fall in a lift because it stopped suddenly, amongst other things.

In this guide, we’re going to explain in detail what a lift accident is and when you could be entitled to compensation, what you can claim for and how you can prove somebody else is to blame.

Claims could be possible for an accident at work, in shopping centres, in hospitals, at airports or even for a lift or escalator accident at a stadium. Injuries can be caused by trips or falls, part of your body being crushed or because you’ve been trapped.

To be eligible to seek compensation, you’ll need to claim within the personal injury claims time limit. This is a 3-year period from the date of your accident. It could also start from the date a doctor diagnosed your injuries.

As with any other type of personal injury claim, the evidence is really important to support your compensation request. Therefore, we’ll explain the types of evidence you should attempt to gather.

After you’ve read our guide, if you’d like to begin a claim, please call one of our experts for free legal advice.

What Is A Lift Accident Or An Escalator Accident?

You might think that if you’re injured while using a lift or an escalator, you would be automatically entitled to compensation. However, that’s not always the case. Before taking on your claim, a solicitor will usually want to find out if:

  • The defendant (the person you blame) owed you a duty of care.
  • Whether their negligence led to an accident.
  • And if you suffered an injury during that accident.

If your case means you answer yes to all of the above questions, you could be entitled to compensation for your injuries. Having the support of a specialist personal injury solicitor can be vital because having someone who understands the legislation to support your lift accident claims and the medical evidence required to support your escalator accident claims. Hiring the right solicitor could mean you’ll get the right amount of compensation for your injuries.

What Are The Main Risks Of Lifts And Escalators?

Many people ask, “Are lifts safe?” and have worries about being trapped in a lift that plummets to the ground, but in reality, that’s a fairly rare occurrence. Most lifts and escalators are safe so long as they’re maintained properly and repaired when faulty.

More common risks associated with lifts and escalators include:

  • Falling in a lift because it stops suddenly.
  • Having a finger trapped in a lift door.
  • Clothing or fingers being trapped in the teeth of an escalator.
  • Trip hazards caused when lifts fail to stop in the right place.
  • Trips and falls caused by slippery steps on an escalator.

If you’ve suffered any type of injury following a lift accident or escalator accident, you could be able to claim against the operator of the lift. Please call to discuss your options with one of our experts.

What Should You Do If Involved In A Lift Or Escalator Accident?

As we’ve explained throughout this guide, if your injury was caused by accident caused by elevator negligence, you could seek compensation, but you will need evidence to support your claim. Therefore, if you are involved in an accident, you should:

  • Report the accident to the lift operator. It will be recorded in their accident report book, so you should ask for a copy as evidence.
  • Seek medical treatment for your injuries. This will ensure your injuries are treated professionally. Also, you could use medical records as further evidence.
  • Ask witnesses for their details.
  • If there is CCTV covering the area, ask for a copy. Remember to do this promptly as it won’t be retained forever.
  • Photograph the scene of the accident and also of any visible injuries.

When you have as much evidence as possible, call our specialists for free advice about whether you’ll be able to claim or if you need more evidence for your lift accident claims.

Lift And Escalator Accident Statistics

The Lift and Escalator Industry Association (LEIA) has estimated that there are around a quarter of a million passenger and goods lifts in the UK.

According to figures from the Health and Safety Executive, 266 people were injured in accidents in lifts, hoisting devices and elevating work platforms between 2002 and 2010. Four people were killed in fatal accidents involving lifts in the same time frame.

On top of this, another 182 accidents causing injuries occurred in service ducts, lift shafts and cellar hatches. Any of these could potentially lead to escalator accident claims.


Causes Of Accidents In Lifts

There are a number of causes of accidents in lifts that could lead to a compensation claim. The list below shows some of the more common:

  • Door malfunctions causing limbs to be trapped.
  • Trips caused by levelling errors meaning the lift stops at the incorrect height.
  • The jolting or sudden stopping of the lift causing you to fall.
  • Trip hazards in or around the entrance of a lift.

If your type of accident isn’t listed, don’t worry because we could still help. Give us a call and let us know what happened. We will assess your lift accident claims for free and see if you’re entitled to compensation.

Causes Of Accidents On Escalators

Here are some of the more common causes of accidents on an escalator.

  • Overcrowded escalators causing a fall because of shoving or jostling.
  • Wet or slippery steps causing a fall.
  • Spillages, leaks or cleaning near the entrance or escalator causing a slip.
  • An emergency stop button being pressed.
  • Failure of the escalator causing it to stop suddenly, causing a fall.

Please get in touch if you’ve suffered an injury because of any of the above types of accident.

Escalator And Lift Accidents In The Workplace

Your employer has a duty of care to protect you and ensure your safety while you’re at work. Under the Health and Safety at Work Act 1974, they need to find any potential risks and reduce them where possible. This includes risk posed by lifts and escalators.

Therefore, your employer should:

  • Regularly maintain lifts and escalators (using specialist contractors) according to the manufacturer’s guidance.
  • Train all staff on how to use lifts for moving stock or equipment.
  • Ensure areas around lifts and escalators are clear from trip hazards.
  • Ensure any wet areas nearby are cleared quickly and warning signs used, or the escalator or lift stopped until the area is clear.

Failure to do any of the above which causes an accident to happen, could mean you’re eligible for compensation. Your employer, legally, can’t prevent you from claiming. They can’t discipline you and will have insurance in place to cover the costs of any such claim, so don’t be put off.

How Common Are Lift Accident Claims Against Employers?

According to the latest statistics from the Health and Safety Executive, there were 441,000 people that self-reported a non-fatal injury at work during 2020- 21. Accidents at work can happen for many reasons, but if you can prove that your injuries were the result of an accident that was not your fault, and could have been prevented had your employer not been negligent in taking care of your health and safety, you could claim. The most common causes of accidents at work during the 2020- 21 period, were slips, trips and falls. We have put together a graph below to show you the other common causes of workplace accidents during this period.

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Call today if you’ve been injured in a lift or escalator accident at work and would like to discuss making escalator accident claims.


Could I Claim If I Was Trapped In A Lift?

Many of us worry about being trapped in small spaces. Entering a lift can make you feel confined even when they’re functioning correctly, but if you get stuck for any period of time because the lift stops, you could become very stressed and agitated. This scenario can be worsened if you’re using a very small lift, such as a work lift used to transport one person and a limited amount of equipment.

The mental injuries caused by a lift failure could mean you’re entitled to compensation. That might be the case if the lift stopped due to a fault or lack of maintenance.

If there is an emergency button or telephone in the lift, you should use it to contact the support staff immediately. You should also ensure, following your release, that the accident was logged in an accident report book and ask for a copy of the report.

Compensation for being stuck in a lift might be possible to cover the anguish caused and also may include the cost of counselling used to help you recover. Read on for further details about what could comprise your lift accident claims.

Elevator And Lift Slips and Trips

As the elevator accident statistics showed earlier in this guide showed, trips and falls in lifts are one of the most common types of accident. They can be caused in a number of different ways, including:

  • Slips caused by spillages within the lift that hadn’t been cleared up.
  • Loose floor tiles or carpet tiles which caused you to trip.
  • Sudden stopping of the lift.
  • Tripping over when exiting the lift because the gap between the door and lift floor was not level.

These types of accidents can lead to a number of different injuries, including:

  • Hand and wrist injuries caused by using the hands to prevent the fall.
  • Head injuries.
  • Broken bones.
  • Damaged ligaments, muscles or tendons.

If you fall in a lift, make sure to photograph the root cause of your accident before it is repaired or removed. Report the accident to the lift operator and ask any witnesses for their details. And this information could be crucial for your escalator accident claims.

Mental Or Physical Effects Of An Accident On A Lift Or Escalator

As with any personal injury claim, an accident claim involving lifts or escalators can cause many different physical injuries. As discussed earlier, you could also claim for the mental effects of an accident too.

For instance, you may struggle, following an accident at work, to use a lift again because you’re scared of the consequences. This could cause you to worry or become stressed at the thought of using the lift, which might need specialist support to help you overcome your fears.

The physical effects of an accident might be minor and only affect you for a short period, in which case the effect of the accident is minimal. However, in very serious accidents, you might suffer the effects of a lift or escalator accident for many months, years or even the rest of your life.

Therefore, it’s only right that you should consider claiming compensation for both physical and mental injuries. To help ascertain the impact of your accident, an independent doctor will be used to assess you and ask questions about how you’ve been affected in both the short and long term.

Compensation Payouts In Lift And Escalator Accident Claims For 2022

When you begin any kind of personal injury claim, you might question how much compensation you could actually receive following your accident. This question is hard to answer, as the full amount of compensation you could receive is subject to the individual circumstances of your case.

Generally, compensation for escalator accident claims is made up of general damages and special damages. These two amounts then come together to form the final sum of your award.

General Damages

General damages is the term used to describe compensation covering the suffering caused by your lift accident injuries. For example, if your leg is amputated after an injury, this is likely to change aspects of your life in permanent ways.

As such, the compensation you may receive should be calculated to reflect this.  Other circumstances considered when calculating how much you could receive include the length of your recovery, the type of injuries you suffered, and who is found to be at fault.

Special Damages

Sometimes, your lift accident injuries could result in financial losses. For example, you may need help with childcare or you may be unable to work and lose out on income. In these cases, you may be able to claim the cost of these expenses back under special damages.

You will be required to provide proof of these expenses when you claim, but you may be also able to claim back expenses such as:

  • Damage to personal property
  • Travel costs
  • Domestic help
  • Medical costs

Lift Accident And Escalator Accident Compensation Claims Calculator

We’re often asked how much compensation will be paid for different injuries sustained in a lift accident and other types of accident. Realistically, it’s difficult to say because there are no two accidents the same. Therefore, a proper estimate will only be provided after we know more about the specifics of your case. However, to help you now, we’ve provided the personal injury claims calculator table below.

Compensation Payouts for a Lift or Escalator Accident

The figures below have been taken from the Judicial College guidelines (JCG). Solicitors and lawyers use this information to accurately calculate your compensation if you’ve suffered an injury from an incident caused by negligence, such as a lift accident. The figures are taken from the latest guidelines, published in April 2022.

Please remember that these figures are not guaranteed, as every claim is unique. You would only receive compensation from a claim if you have sufficient evidence showing that your injury was caused by third-party negligence.

Body PartSeverityCompensationDetails
NeckMinor to severeUp to the region of £148,330This range of compensation is for injuries caused by lift accidents starting from tissue damage through to injuries with permanent pain / loss of movement.
LegMinor to severeUp to £135,920This range of compensation is for injuries caused by lift accidents starting from tissue damage through to an injury which causes permanent disability.
Arm Moderate to severeUp to £130,930This range of compensation is for injuries caused by lift accidents starting from long term injuries which do fully heal, to permenant damage causing paralysis.
HandMinor to seriousUp to £109,650This range of compensation is for injuries caused by lift accidents starting from tissue damage through loss of use of one hand (long term)
FootMinor to very severeUp to £109,650This range of compensation is for injuries caused by lift accidents starting from simple basic tissue damage through to entire loss of the foot
FingerMinor to severeUp to £90,750This range of compensation is for injuries caused by lift accidents starting from soft tissue damage through to amputation of one or more fingers.
AnkleMinor to severeUp to £69,700This range of compensation is for injuries caused by lift accidents starting from sprains, through to complete permenant loss of function.
WristMinor to severeUp to £59,860This range of compensation is for injuries caused by lift accidents starting from tissue damage through to permanent loss of the function.
ThumbMinor to severeUp to £54,830This range of compensation is for injuries caused by lift accidents starting from soft tissue damage through to amputation of the thumb.

If your claim is successful, the amount of compensation you could receive is based on many aspects, including the severity of the injury and whether the injury is permanent or not. To help determine the extent of your injuries, an independent medical assessment may be performed by a medical professional as part of the claims process. This can help demonstrate the nature of your injury.

One of our solicitors can organise this assessment to take place in as convenient a location and time as possible. If you have further questions about the claims process or want to see if you can claim for an escalator accident, please contact our advisors for free legal advice.

No Win No Fee Lift Accident And Escalator Accident Claims

If you are considering making escalator accident claims, and would like a solicitor to help you, you could benefit from their legal knowledge and experience without having to pay their fees up front. Some people may be put off from making a lift accident claim due to the fact that they would not be able to afford an upfront payment to a lawyer. However, with No Win No Fee claims this is not necessary. There are no upfront legal fees to pay, and you would not pay your lawyer until your claim had ended and compensation came through.

In order to make a claim in this way, you would have to sign a document called a Conditional Fee Agreement or CFA. This would dictate the level of success fees that your lawyer would take from your compensation payout in the event of a successful claim. These fees are capped at 25% of your compensation. If your case is not successful you do not pay this fee, and you do not even have to cover any of the costs your lawyer incurred while they were pursuing your compensation claim.

To talk to us further about making No Win No Fee claims, please call our team today.

Could Accident Claims UK Help Me Make A Lift Or Escalator Accident Claim?

Whether you’re looking to claim for a faulty lift injury, make a ‘stuck in a lift claim’, or for an accident on an escalator, we could help you. We have a team of dedicated professionals who are available 24/7 to help you decide whether you could make a claim or not. They’ll assess your claim for free and review any evidence you can provide. They’ll also provide free legal advice about your claim and explain if you require any further evidence to support it.
If they think you are eligible to claim, they could introduce you to a personal injury lawyer with up to 30 years of experience in making personal injury claims. Our panel of accident solicitors work tirelessly for you to try and ensure you receive the right amount of compensation you deserve. They’ll do this on a No Win No Fee basis too.

Using a personal injury solicitor to help with escalator accident claims

So, if you’re thinking of making a claim for injuries sustained in an escalator accident, where do you start? Will you try to get CCTV footage showing a crowded escalator or of the escalator suddenly stopping? Will you try to find witnesses who saw what happened or will you request copies of medical reports that detail your injuries? Or, as an alternative, will you call Accident Claims UK to see if one of our personal injury solicitors could help?

We specialise in helping clients make accident claims. Our team have up to 30-years experience in handling different cases and trying to win compensation for our clients. As such, they know where to go for the evidence you’ll need to support your case. Furthermore, they have the experience to know how to handle objections raised by insurers. While there is no guarantee of winning any compensation claim, our solicitors check the chances of success before taking cases on. If we accept your escalator accident claim, it will be processed on a No Win No Fee basis.

If you would like us to review your case, for free, please contact our team of advisors today. Whether you make a claim or not, you’ll receive free legal advice.

Talking To Our Accident Claims Team

If you’ve decided that you would like to begin a personal injury claim and you’d like to let Accident Claims UK help you, then you can contact us by:

Our live chat facility and telephone lines are available 24/7, so you can speak with an expert whenever is best for you. We’ll always begin with a free consultation where we’ll answer any questions you might have regarding your escalator accident claims. We’ll also assess your accident, your injuries and your evidence to help you decide whether you could make a No Win No Fee claim or not.

Lift Accident Claims And Escalator Accident Claims FAQs

Can I claim if I’m injured in a lift in public? 

Yes, you can. We’ve already looked at the duty of care that your employer has to you under the Health and Safety at Work etc Act 1974 to ensure your safety while at the workplace. But there is also a duty of care held to you while you’re in public places like shopping centres, gyms and restaurants.

The Occupier’s Liability Act 1957  says that the person in control of the space has a responsibility to make sure that you can use it for the purpose intended free from the risk of harm. This includes making sure that lifts and escalators are well-maintained and don’t malfunction, as well as making sure that good housekeeping is maintained to reduce the risk of slips and trips. So if you’re stuck in a lift while out in public or are involved in a lift accident, then you could be entitled to make a claim.

How much compensation could I get for a lift accident or escalator accident? 

If you’ve been injured in an accident in a lift or an accident in an elevator, then you may be wondering “how much compensation could I receive for my lift accident?”. There’s no one answer to this question, as the amount of compensation you will receive will depend on how the accident affected you. If you’ve suffered from an injury that is likely to have long-lasting effects on your quality of life, this will attract a larger sum than injuries that you recover from within a few weeks or month.

If you’d like to know more about how much compensation you could receive for your accident on an escalator or accident in a lift, then get in touch with our team today to discuss your lift accident claims in greater detail.

Which is safer: a staircase or an elevator?

It’s safer to use an elevator based on the larger number of average staircase accidents per year.

Can you die in an elevator crash?

It’s very rare, but there are cases where people die as a result of elevator crashes.

How long do elevator cables last?

On average, elevator cables could last between 10-15 years before requiring a replacement.

How often should elevator cables be replaced?

The recommendation is every 3-5 years, or as soon as you spot any damage to existing cables.

How often should an elevator be replaced?

It’s advisable to replace an elevator after around 20-25 years, and after numerous previous elevator cable replacements.

How much does it cost to replace an elevator?

It could cost thousands of pounds to fully replace an elevator.

Resources And Related Claims Guides To Escalator Accident Claims

Thanks for taking the time to read this guide about claiming for injuries caused by a lift accident. If you need any further information, please call one of our experts today. Alternatively, you could read some of the guides and articles we’ve listed below.

Lift Safety – Guidance from the Health and Safety Executive about lift safety measures and maintenance requirements.

Head Injuries – Information from the NHS about the treatment and symptoms of head injuries, including concussion.

Escalator Safety – A guide from the Lift and Escalator Industry Association (LEIA) about escalator safety procedures.

Accident in Public Claims – Information on accidents in a public place, which could include escalator or lift accidents.

Accident at Work Claims – If your lift accident or escalator accident happened while at work, then this guide could help you decide whether you could make a claim.

Broken Bones – If you suffered a broken bone during an accident in a lift or an accident on an elevator, this guide will show how much compensation could be paid.

Thank you for reading our guide on lift accident claims and escalator accident claims.