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Grandmother Plummets Down Empty Elevator Shaft in New Jersey Apartment Building

The woman, who was with her granddaughter at the time, was reportedly hospitalized with serious injuries, including a broken elbow and stomach tear

Empty elevator shaft at New Jersey apartment building where a grandmother fell on Monday
Empty elevator shaft at New Jersey apartment building where a grandmother fell on Monday
  • A woman was seriously injured earlier this week after she fell down an elevator shaft at a New Jersey apartment building on Monday

  • The grandmother reportedly sustained a broken elbow and stomach tear as a result of the fall

  • The woman's granddaughter, who was with her, was not injured

A grandmother is recovering after falling down an elevator shaft in New Jersey earlier this week.

The woman, 53, had just picked up her granddaughter from a nearby bus stop on Monday when she attempted to enter the elevator inside the apartment building on Gifford Avenue, according to CBS affiliate WCBS-TV and News 12 New Jersey.

Instead, the grandmother plummeted from the first floor to the basement below, NBC affiliate WNBC-TV reported. The drop was about 16 feet, per WCBS-TV.

Brandon Rennick told News 12 he was inside of an apartment with a friend when he heard the woman screaming.

Related: Elderly and Disabled Residents Stranded in Apartments for Nearly 2 Weeks Due to Broken Elevator

“The grandmother assumed the elevator was still there on the first floor and she opened it but tried to go in backward thinking the elevator was still there and she fell,” he said.

Footage provided by Rennick to WCBS-TV showed the moments after the woman’s fall. The woman can be heard crying for help as others frantically try to assist.

Firefighters drilled a hole into the elevator to access the woman from the basement, according to News 12. Her injuries complicated the rescue.

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The woman was hospitalized with serious injuries, including a broken elbow and stomach tear, WNBC-TV reported, citing her daughter and a neighbor. The young girl she was with was uninjured.

In a statement shared Wednesday, building owner Cross Country Management said, “Tenant safety and security are our top priority. We are actively investigating the incident along with our elevator company,” according to News 12 and WCBS-TV.

Related: 10-Year-Old Boy Dies After Being Crushed by Elevator, Police Say

Neither Cross County Management nor the Jersey City Fire Department immediately responded to PEOPLE’s requests for comment.

Family said the injured woman plans to file a lawsuit, according to WCBS-TV.

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