Agustin Martinez-Gallegos Died In Joliet Elevator Accident

Joliet Worker Agustin Martinez-Gallegos Died After Falling Down Elevator Shaft At Woodworking Business on Maple Street

 Agustin Martinez-Gallegos Died In Joliet Elevator Accident

JOLIET, ILLINOIS (April 11, 2024) – A worker identified as Agustin Martinez-Gallegos has tragically died in an elevator accident at a Joliet business on Maple Street.

Will County officials are saying that the accident took place around 3:40 p.m. on Tuesday. Agustin Martinez-Gallegos was moving cabinets into an elevator with other employees.

He was in the elevator when it began to rise unexpectedly. When he attempted to escape, he became stuck before falling down the elevator shaft.

Paramedics were called to the scene in order to help the victim. Agustin Martinez-Gallegos was taken to Silver Cross Hospital with critical injuries.

Despite life-saving measures, he was pronounced dead at the hospital. A full investigation remains ongoing at this time.

Liability For Joliet Elevator Accidents 

Elevator accidents may seem like freak occurrences, but they are unfortunately all too common. According to Gitnux, “In the US alone there are approximately 27 fatal elevator-related accidents per year as well as 10,000 injuries related to elevators annually. Elevator door accidents make up 9% of all elevator-related injuries while mechanical failure is responsible for 15.3%.” There are a number of steps that property owners should take in order to prevent elevator accidents.

  • Property owners should make sure that elevators are regularly inspected and maintained by qualified professionals.
  • Property owners should conduct regular safety checks on elevator components.
  • Property owners should provide training to employees on elevator safety procedures.
  • Property owners should ensure that they are compliant with all relevant safety regulations.

When a worker is killed on the job, their family will typically have recourse through the worker’s compensation system. The worker’s compensation system in Illinois is based on a no-fault insurance scheme. There is no need for an injured worker or their family to show that any person or group was at fault. A worker or their family may also be able to seek support through a third-party liability claim.

A third-party claim may be possible if an entity separate from a worker’s employer contributed to an accident. For example, a third party may include the company that owns a building. Property owners have a legal obligation to maintain their premises in a reasonably safe manner. If a property owner has actual or constructive notice of a dangerous condition with their property and fails to act, this could form the basis of a negligence claim. There are a number of ways that a property owner could face liability for an elevator accident.

  • A property owner may not have performed adequate maintenance on an elevator.
  • A property owner may have failed to equip an elevator with the required safety mechanisms.
  • A property owner may have failed to install an elevator properly.
  • A property owner may have failed to seal off an elevator with an open shaft.

The vast majority of elevator accidents are completely preventable. They nearly always involve multiple safety lapses. Part of the problem is that it can be expensive to maintain an elevator. The technicians who repair elevators are not cheap. Many property owners will forgo needed maintenance in order to save money. This is why it is so important that there is a thorough investigation after any elevator accident.

Investigating Joliet Elevator Accidents

We at Horwitz Horwitz & Associates extend our deepest condolences to the family of Agustin Martinez-Gallegos. Any person who may have more information about what happened should reach out to OSHA. It is our sincere hope that steps are taken to prevent other tragedies like this. There are many questions that remain unanswered. When was the last time that this elevator was professionally serviced and maintained?

Do you need more information about a Joliet elevator accident? Our team of workers rights advocates is here to answer any questions that you may have. We care deeply that workers are aware of their rights and that those rights are being protected. Whether you just have legal questions or need a free, independent investigation into any incident, we may be able to assist you. You can reach out to us anytime at (312) 564-4256.