Three rescued from elevator

Passengers stuck at County Courts Building in Towson

July 31, 2008|By Kevin Rector | Kevin Rector,Sun Reporter

Three people were rescued yesterday from a malfunctioning elevator in the Baltimore County Courts Building in Towson that suddenly dropped a few feet after stopping at the lobby, a county Fire Department spokeswoman said.

One man was taken to Sinai Hospital as a medical precaution, but did not have life-threatening injuries, said Elise Armacost, the spokeswoman. Two teenage boys who were in the elevator refused treatment and left with their mother, she said.

Fire and rescue personnel arrived at the building on Bosley Avenue after a call was received at 10:56 a.m. saying that people were trapped in an elevator, she said.

Officials said they do not know how many people were in the elevator. Several passengers managed to pry open doors enough to escape, and they left the area before fire personnel arrived, Armacost said.

Rescue personnel pried the doors open fully to get the three remaining people out, she said.

A safety mechanism on the elevator probably prevented it from falling farther, Armacost said. The cause of the malfunction is being investigated.

The elevator system in the building is being renovated, said David Fidler, a county public works spokesman. The elevators have been in use since the courthouse was built in 1973, he said.

Fidler said he did not know when the malfunctioning elevator was scheduled to be renovated or what caused the problem.

"We have no idea what triggered it," he said.

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