Casino and escalator manufacturer hit with slip-and-fall suit

Jon Campisi May 17, 2011, 7:50am

A Maryland woman is suing the Philadelphia Park Casino and Racetrack and the makers of an escalator on which she got injured while at the gaming hall.

Joseph S. Lukomski, an attorney with Rovner, Allen, Rovner, Zimmerman and Nash, filed a premises liability lawsuit May 13 at the Philadelphia Court of Common Pleas on behalf of client Elga Stemme.

The additional defendants, aside from the casino operator, are Greenwood Gaming and Entertainment Inc., Greenwood Gaming Services Inc., Bensalem Racing Association Inc., Keystone Turf Club Inc., Otis Elevator Co., Otis Elevator Company of Pennsylvania and John Doe’s A to Z who are unnamed.

According to the lawsuit, the Germantown, Maryland, resident was at the Philadelphia Park Casino, located at 3001 Street Road in Bensalem, on June 6, 2009 at about 1 p.m. when she stepped onto an escalator, only to have her cane lodged between the escalator step, an act that caused her to fall to the ground.

Stemme cried out for help as she was dragged up the escalator, the lawsuit states. The injured patron was unable to get up as the escalator continued moving.

Employees failed to stop the escalator from moving from the first through third floors throughout the ordeal, the complaint states.

“[The defendants] did allow the aforesaid escalator and premises to be and remain in a dangerous and defective condition which thereby created an unreasonable hazard to persons lawfully on defendants’ premises,” the suit states.

The lawsuit accuses all defendants of failing to properly maintain and inspect the escalator involved in the incident, and for failing to warn the plaintiff regarding the use of a cane on such a device.

The suit also claims the defendants failed to properly design the escalator in such a way that it would cease operating if something like a cane, or other similar object, became stuck within its steps.

As a result of the accident, the plaintiff has suffered serious injuries that may be permanent in nature, the complaint states. Stemme’s injuries included a femur fracture requiring surgery, and a lengthy hospitalization and rehabilitation, aggravation of existing spinal stenosis, should stress from having to use a walker, a post-surgical shortening of the leg, back pain and other injuries, the suit states.

The complaint says Stemme has had to expend various sums of money for medical care and has or may suffer a loss of earnings for an indefinite time into the future.

The plaintiff is seeking compensatory damages jointly and/or severally in a sum in excess of $50,000 plus court costs and attorney’s fees.

A jury trial has been requested.

The case number is 110501657.

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