Patient Dies in Horrible Elevator Accident

  1. I apologize if this has already been posted. I did a search and couldn't find anything. This has got to be THE most horrible hospital related accident I've ever heard of.

    From The Times Picayune

    Hospital patient dies in elevator accident

    Kenner man was headed to surgery

    Tuesday July 22, 2003

    By Matt Scallan
    Kenner bureau

    A 76-year-old man on his way to surgery was killed when an elevator crushed him Monday at Kenner Regional Medical Center.

    L.A. Brown of Kenner was being moved on a gurney from the hospital's fourth floor to the second floor. As the attendant pulled the gurney from the elevator, the elevator car dropped several feet, pinning Brown's legs between the roof of the car and the gurney, said Capt. Steve Caraway, a Kenner Police Department spokesman.

    The investigation is continuing, Caraway said.

    "We're deeply saddened by the tragic turn of events, and our thoughts and prayers are with the patient and his family," said Debbie Keel, the hospital's chief executive officer. "We take any loss very seriously and are carefully examining the circumstances of this tragic accident."

    Hospital officials would not release further information about Brown, citing patient confidentiality laws. But relatives and neighbors said he was hospitalized more than a week ago for dehydration. Stephanie Brown, his granddaughter, said doctors told a relative that Brown was scheduled for exploratory surgery for a tumor in his colon.

    Brown's son, Leroy Brown Jr., said his father was a retired railroad and construction worker who loved to fish.

    Kenner firefighters used air bags and other braces to remove Brown's body, Fire Chief Mike Zito said.

    "We had to use a lot of special equipment to do this while making sure no one else was hurt, but it's the kind of thing that we train for," Zito said.

    The attendant moving Brown from the elevator was not hurt.

    The eight Otis-brand elevators in the Tenet-owned hospital were inspected in January by Schindler Elevator Corp., a hospital contractor. In documents filed with the city of Kenner, Schindler said the elevators were tested according to national standards.

    "Even though this inspection has been performed, it does not ensure that every defect that could exist in the equipment has been found," Schindler concluded in its inspection report.

    Caraway said elevator technicians were already at the hospital when police arrived Monday morning. He said the hospital might have called for service before the accident occurred.

    . . . . . . .

    Matt Scallan can be reached at or (504) 467-1746.
    Last edit by Brita01 on Jul 24, '03
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    About Brita01

    Joined: Aug '01; Posts: 635; Likes: 89
    LPN, Actor; from US


  3. by   NICU_Nurse
    Brita, did you see the original news reports on this? It's so very sad. You'd never have thought...
    Last edit by NICU_Nurse on Aug 18, '03
  4. by   eltrip
  5. by   Brita01
    Originally posted by Kristi2377
    Brita, did you see the original news reports on this? The CEO was...well...I'm assuming she was shaken, but she was actually smiling and laughing softly when she was interviewed immediately after the accident. It was HIGHLY inappropriate, and my jaw was just on the floor. Very insensitive. That's all anyone can talk about at work the last few days! It's so very sad. I did clinicals at that hospital in nursing school- it's a very nice facility. You'd never have thought...

    No, I didn't see the spokeswoman laughing after the interview. Strange. I wasn't sure if many others had heard about this or not. There's not a whole lot in the news about it here. I've worked inside of this hospital many times. I was horrified to hear this.
  6. by   Katnip
    What a horrible thing to happen. Of all the things that I can imagine that can go wrong, elevators would not be high on my list.
  7. by   Rapheal
    Horrible. Poor guy.
  8. by   NICU_Nurse
    I don't get the paper, so I didn't know if the elevator incident was widely covered; I just saw it the afternoon it happened on the news.

    It's scary, IMO, because there is not a day that goes by that I don't get on an elevator and wonder if something will happen (and confidence is NOT inspired when your elevators at work close on you as you're entering and lock up, shake and shimmy, don't line up with the floor properly, and sometimes travel you up and down for ten minutes without letting you off!).
    Last edit by NICU_Nurse on Aug 18, '03
  9. by   night owl
    That is a horribly gruesome way to die, and that CEO was probably in shock, on somekind of medication or drunk for her inappropriate smiling and soft laughter during her interview following this horrendous accident.
    Something like this happened at my facility about 15 years ago. A volunteer was taking a pt to x-ray, the pt was in a w/c. The volunteer had his back to the elevator doors and when the doors opened up, he walked backwards onto the elevator as he pulled the w/c with him except there was no car, just an empty shaft. They fell two stories, the w/c and the pt fell on top of him. The volunteer died, but the pt survived. Of course it never made the news because the "biggens" didn't want it to. Never heard what happened after that either. Another horrible accident... in a GOV'T hospital. The elevator was supposedly turned off due to repair work that was being done to it (an Otis elevator) and those doors should have never opened. Sad huh? Everyone was in shock and disbelief that this happened at our facility. It was a sad time for all of us.
  10. by   blue280
    When I worked in a factory before becoming a nurse, we had a similar incident. One of our material handlers called for the elevator and when it he thought it was there, he too backed into an empty elevator shaft. He was pulling a skid that weighed about 1500lbs and fortunately for him, it did not fall doem the shaft with him! He fell 4 flights, landed on the roof of the elevator but there was a metal shaft that was sticking up off the roof and he impaled himself on that. He lived but is not able to work anymore. Of course the upper-ups felt he was careless nad in too much of a hurry. Too bad they have to support him for the rest of his life.
  11. by   Shamrock
  12. by   Katnip
    And I thought I was over my elevator phobia.
  13. by   renerian
    Oh Gosh how horrible.......

  14. by   jnette
    Really tragic. For the attendant, too.. can you imagine ?

    Nightowl.. that's equally horrible about yours ! Too sad.

    I've never had any fears about elevators.. EVER.. but I still don't think I would ever back into one without looking ! Woudn't back into ANYTHING without looking first...