The parents of an Ohio State University freshman killed in an elevator accident have settled their lawsuit against the school. The Plaintiff’s reached a $1 million settlement with the university. The student, Andrew Polakowski, died on October 20, 2006, when he was pinned trying to leave an overcrowded elevator that was stuck between floors. The settlement also calls for $612,500 in contributions to Ohio State toward the settlement from five companies involved in the manufacture and maintenance of elevators.
After the accident, the University reviewed how it handles elevator upgrades, repairs and emergency calls. Also, Ohio State now posts safety messages inside all elevators and adds extra messages outside dormitory elevators. The university also addresses elevator safety for all students the day they move into a dorm.
It was alleged in the lawsuit that the school was negligent with regard to the elevator that crushed the 18-year-old student. At the time of the accident, the elevator was crowded with 24 people, exceeding its weight capacity by as much as 1,100 pounds. Students piling onto the already-crowded elevator car may have encouraged still more people to enter, according to the police report on the accident which was released in 2007. After the lawsuit was filed, Ohio State University argued it was not responsible for the student’s death because his own negligence caused or contributed to his injuries. Ohio State said the student helped to overcrowd the elevator, causing it to become stuck between floors. Peter Weinberger, a lawyer from Cleveland, represented the Plaintiffs in this case and did a very good job.
Source: Associated Press
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