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Public Housing Residents Worry About Elevator Safety

Monday, August 25, 2008

A week after a 5-year-old Brooklyn boy died falling into a public housing elevator, residents are asking questions about the safety of elevators in their public housing buildings.

Anne Washington says it's hard to keep track of the elevator breakdowns in her complex — the Grant Houses in West Harlem.

WASHINGTON: I mean, I can't really count because it happens so many times that you get so used to it. My thing is that if the elevator is off before I leave I pray that it's on when I come back because I live on the 17th floor, I have arthritis so I can't really walk up and down stairs properly.

REPORTER: Washington and several other residents lit candles for the boy, Jacob Neuman, in front of the Housing Authority's headquarters this afternoon. They blame a funding shortage for the elevator breakdowns.

A spokesman for NYCHA says elevator outages happen for a number of reasons, including drops in voltage because of high summer demand for electricity.

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