Boy dies after his head gets stuck in Mayo Hospital elevator

Updated October 05, 2019

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Identified as Fahad, 14, the boy was an attendant of his father, Muhammad Zahid, who was under treatment on the first floor of the 40-room Albert Victor Hospital (AVH) of the teaching institute. — Online/File
Identified as Fahad, 14, the boy was an attendant of his father, Muhammad Zahid, who was under treatment on the first floor of the 40-room Albert Victor Hospital (AVH) of the teaching institute. — Online/File

LAHORE: A teenage boy got trapped in a lift of Mayo Hospital and died of serious head injuries on Friday.

Identified as Fahad, 14, the boy was an attendant of his father, Muhammad Zahid, who was under treatment on the first floor of the 40-room Albert Victor Hospital (AVH) of the teaching institute.

The incident occurred in a lift installed in 1974 for the exclusive use of patients. The lift operator was absent when the boy got trapped and the hospital administration suspended him from service.

An official said that Fahad was going to the first floor of the building at 11:40am to see his father when he popped his head out of a window in the 45-year-old lift. His head got stuck in the space between the lift structure and the window’s grill and hit the floor of the first storey where the lift stopped.

On hearing the cries of the boy, the lift operator rushed to the spot, pulled down the elevator manually with a rope and recovered him with severe head injuries. Other staff on duty and doctors also reached there and rushed the boy to the coronary care unit from where he was shifted to the emergency unit, but he died during treatment, the official said.

He said according to the preliminary report, Fahad’s death occurred due to a neck fracture he suffered when his head got stuck. His parents fainted as soon as they found out about the sudden death of their child and the doctors provided them emergency care.

The official claimed that though the lift was 45 years old, but was safe. He said the window was created as an emergency exit to avoid suffocation in case the lift developed a fault and stopped working while moving.

Senior officials of the health department and police also reached the spot besides top admin officials of the hospital to investigate the incident. The Mayo chief executive officer said that according to initial inquiries it appeared to be an accident.

“Prima facie, it appears to be an accidental death. However, to probe into the matter to assess different determinants of this accidental death, and for fixation of responsibility, if any, an inquiry committee has been constituted,” he added.

The inquiry committee included additional medical superintendents Dr Syed Muhammad Zubair and Dr Khalid Bin Aslam, Deputy Nursing Superintendent Bushra Hussain and bio-medical engineer Muhammad Tahir. Action will be taken in the light of the inquiry report, he said.

Fahad’s father, Zahid, later filed an application with the Gawalmandi police to lodge a case against the Mayo MS, a lady doctor and the lift operator for negligence that he alleged led to the death of his son.

In his application, he alleged that the doctor and her medics would not visit his room for treatment about which his son would complain to the MS each time. The incident occurred when the medics did not visit him again on Friday and he sent his son to the office of the MS for complaint. He asked the police to lodge a criminal case against those nominated in the application.

Published in Dawn, October 5th, 2019