Tuesday, May 02, 2006

If You Have a Moment...

A little boy fell down the elevator shaft of my building last night. It's not immediately clear what happened or how, but I'm sure we'll all know soon.

The poor little guy fell down nine floors. He didn't look good when they carried him away and sadly, he was pronounced dead at the hospital.

So if you would, please say a little prayer for the family.

Thank you.


PeskyFly said...

That's awful. How? How can that even happen?

Freedonian said...

The news said it was a pretty freak accident. In fact, it sounded like they couldn't find any other accidents quite like it.

If I'm understanding it (And keep in mind that I'm more Tim Allen than Bob Vila), there's a guide at the bottom of an elevator door that keeps it in place.

Whether it broke, or simply slipped out somehow or another, I don't know. But either way, it was out of place.

The little boy leaned on it. Apparently, his little weight was enough to push it out just a few inches--- Just enough for him to fall down.

This is where I enter the picture. I heard a woman screaming "No!" and heard a man shouting something forcefully, authoritatively. So I grabbed a golf club and started trying to find her.

I waled down the steps one floor to 9, and there's a young woman leaning half in, half out of the elevator shaft with the door pushed in at the bottom to allow her in. Some of the neighbors that were already on scene pulled her out. It absolutely broke my heart. She curled up on the floor and kept saying "My baby... My baby's gone."

I thought I had heard someone saying the elevator was stuck on 4. I ran down the next five flights of stairs. The people on four seemed to be just as confused as everyone else.

I ran down to the ground floor, and there were several people trying to brace an elevator door open. I'm still not clear on why--- They were trying to keep the other elevator open. I don't know if that elevator ended up being a factor in the accident or not, but they seemed to think it was pretty important.

Not long after that, my neighbor Brian, who obviously understood what had happened much better than I did, came around the corner. He and the child's grandfather came around carrying him. On the one in a million chance that someone who knows that sweet little boy is interested enough to read this, I'll spare the detail at this point. Suffice it to say that I was not at all optimistic.

I hoped. I prayed. But it was just too much for his little body.

It's been a sad day here. People see each other in the hall, and for the most part, the friendly hellos are replaced by us looking downward and silently shaking our heads.

It doesn't appear to have been anyone's fault. The maintenance crew here is great-- They have a relatively large staff for a building this size, and any maintenance problems are taken care of immediately. They keep the place in great working order. All the common areas are spotless and well painted. This is not the building where you expect this to happen.

It's a tragedy, plain and simple. And a really unusual accident.