Broken elevator strands wheelchair-bound

NEW LONDON, Conn. (WTNH) — Recently, some wheelchair-bound residents at a complex in New London couldn’t get in and out of their building because the elevators were broken.

“It’s just a scary feeling, you know, you’re up here trapped,” said Bob Pearson, who lives on the seventh floor of the high rise on Hempstead Street. “You feel like you’re trapped, you feel like you’re in a cage because the elevators aren’t working.”

Starting on Memorial Day weekend, at least one elevator has been out and at times both of them. Firefighters have been here a few times helping residents stuck between floors.

“They don’t listen to me,” Pearson said. “I think somebody needs to rattle their cage.”

News 8 met up with the building manager and then followed her to the New London Housing Authority headquarters, where executive director Sue Shontell showed us the repair bills from Bay State Elevator.

Diagnosing the problem was delayed because it was intermittent. We asked if these elevators need to be replaced to make them more reliable. Shontell said they are now working and on a preventative maintenance schedule of once a month.

“It’s not that we ignored the problem,” Shontell said. “They’ve been out six times trying to diagnose it and get the part and it’s fixed. So I’m not sure what else we could have done.”

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