HUNTINGTON – A Wayne County woman is suing over claims she was injured when she fell down an elevator shaft in a Huntington building.
Kathryn D. Jervis filed a lawsuit Sept. 8 in Cabell Circuit Court against Carole A. Bacon, as owner of The Professional Building, citing negligence.
According to the complaint, Jervis was a volunteer for the charity Dress for Success River Cities Inc., a tenant in Bacon's building on Fourth Avenue in Huntington on Sept. 4, 2013, when she was instructed to go to an upper floor to retrieve bins of clothes from storage.
The complaint states the primary elevator in the building had malfunctioned, and tenants were instructed to use the freight elevator, which was in a dark hallway and featured a manual operation lever, manual doors and an overhead light that sometimes required elevator riders to walk into the elevator in order to turn on.
Jervis, who was a minor at the time of the incident, says she approached the elevator in the dark hallway and the door was closed, which was a common occurrence, so she used a coat hanger to open it.
According to the complaint, when Jervis got the door open, the inside of the elevator was dark, so she stepped inside in the generally accepted method of turning the light on.
However, Jervis says, the elevator was not on the ground floor and she fell two stories down the elevator shaft to the concrete below, sustaining injuries including a fractured spine, broken pelvis and broken wrist.
The defendant is accused of negligence and failure to provide a safe workplace.
Jervis seeks general and special damages, interest and fees.
She is represented by attorney Thomas Perry Boggs of Duffield, Lovejoy, Stemple & Boggs in Huntington. The case has been assigned to Circuit Judge F. Jane Hustead.
Cabell Circuit Court case number: 14-C-631