Many businesses and organizations use revolving doors to allow people in and out of their premises. While revolving doors may not immediately seem to pose a particularly significant hazard, accidents can occur, and a serious injury could result in hospitalization. If you or someone you love suffers an accident as a result of a revolving door, it's a good idea to understand more about the topic and what your legal options are.
Why businesses use revolving doors
Revolving or rotating doors offer several convenient benefits to businesses and other organizations. In practical terms, a revolving door can easily control the flow of people in and out of a building, which is particularly useful when lots of people need to use a single entrance.
These doors can also improve energy efficiency in large buildings. The design cuts the amount of air moving in and out of a building, which makes it easier for the air conditioning system inside the building to work efficiently. Revolving doors are common in buildings where the entrance opens into a large space like an atrium, where constant temperature changes could put the air conditioning into overdrive.
Revolving door hazards
Despite the simple design, revolving doors can pose several hazards. Many people have been the victim of a prankster in a revolving door who decides to push the door too hard, forcing the person in front to walk more quickly to keep up. Nonetheless, a genuine accident is no laughing matter.
Accidents can happen when
the door moves too quickly and pushes the occupant out the exit side, often onto a hard concrete surface.
slips and falls occur because objects like walking sticks and bags get stuck in the door mechanism.
people trap their fingers and limbs.
Building owners who use revolving doors must make sure they are safe to use. If something goes wrong, injured users can often file a personal injury lawsuit.
Personal injury lawsuit principles
To win a personal injury lawsuit, you must show that the building owner or manager was legally responsible for the injuries you incurred. In a slip-and-fall case resulting from a revolving door, you must show that at least one of three following statements is true:
The building owner or manager caused the hazard.
The building owner or manager knew about the hazard and did nothing about it.
The building owner or manager should have known about the danger because any reasonable person in the same situation would have done something about it.
Some of the evidence for negligence could fall under more than one of these descriptions, while other facts can only substantiate one statement. For example, if a building employee breaks part of the door and fails to do something about it, your attorney could argue that the first two statements both apply.
Presenting your case
The defendant's attorney will often try to show that you caused your injury in some way. In some states, this sort of comparative negligence can limit the amount of compensation you receive, so some attorneys will work hard to show you did something wrong. For example, if you don't take appropriate care when walking through a revolving door with children, dogs, or luggage, the defendant's attorney may argue that you are at fault.
Your attorney may suggest that you use an industry expert's evidence to establish that the defendant was negligent. These experts understand exactly how revolving doors should work and can often easily find problems that show the owner or operator was negligent. Examples could include
failure to conduct and record daily safety checks.
failure to train staff members to use the doors safely when attended.
failure to carry out routine maintenance in line with the manufacturer's recommendations.
failure to act on reports of problems from users.
An expert witness can often strengthen your case. In many cases, he or she can point out failings that will outweigh any perceived negligence on your part that the defendant's attorney alleges.
Revolving doors can cause serious injuries. Talk to an experienced personal injury lawyer for more advice and information about filing a lawsuit.