Pregnant Woman Injured in Balcony Fall at Essex Village Apartments in Henrico
We were disturbed to read reports about how a pregnant woman was injured after she fell from a second-story balcony at the under investigation Essex Village Apartments in Henrico, Virginia.
A report on CBS 6 stated the woman was in a stable condition after she plunged from the balcony at the Essex Village Apartments along the 200 block of Engleside Drive in Henrico.
CBS reported that the complex recently tried to repair the balcony but when the woman, who was seven months pregnant, leaned up against it, the balcony gave way.
The report said the 30-year-old woman was trying to fix her screen door when she leaned up against the balcony and it gave way.
Essex Village Apartments
A spokesman from PK Management, the company that carries out repairs, said the balcony was fixed after the incident and secured until permanent repairs could be made.
PK Management claimed the resident had been instructed not to use the balcony. Reports suggested she fell through the railings.
This accident is being investigated by the County police and fire departments as well as officials from the Department of Housing and Urban Development.
CBS 6 noted a catalog of issues at Essex Village Apartments, the Section 8 housing complex by Richmond International Raceway.
The complex has been investigated by CBS 6 following claims its owners have failed to maintain it properly.
Henrico County Manager John Vithoulkas was quoted by the station being critical of conditions at the complex after visiting Essex Village last year. He decided to take action.
Vithoulkas put Deputy County Manager Colonel Doug Middleton in charge of a task force aimed at making life better for residents at the complex. Middleston said:
"It's not a place that anybody should exist and live in.”
Last November, Henrico County building inspectors opened 140 code violation cases at Essex Village.
Police and fire departments are twice as likely to respond to calls for service at Essex Village than anywhere else in the county.
Inspectors from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development reportedly Essex Village an "F" grade.
In some cases, landlords and owners can be held liable for injuries at substandard apartment complexes. We explored the issue here on our blog.
Balconies, walkways, and stairways are among common areas that complex owners have a duty to keep safe. Generally, the owners of a complex are liable if railings are rotten or substandard and give way.
A property owner is less likely to be held liable for problems within an apartment itself.
This blog does not represent legal advice. If you want to find out if you have a case after an injury in an apartment complex or rented housing, call our premises liability team at (757) 455-0077.