Escalator death: mechanical problems not to blame

(Information in the following story is from: The Seattle Times, http://www.seattletimes.com)

SEATTLE (AP) — The Washington state Department of Labor and Industries says mechanical problems were not to blame in the death of a man who fell on a downtown Seattle escalator and was strangled when his clothing got caught in the mechanism.

The Seattle Times reports that a bottle of brandy was found in 42-year-old Maurecio Bell’s back pocket, and video showed he didn’t grasp for a railing after he stumbled in April. He was found at the bottom of a Metro station escalator.

An L&I assistant director, Jose Rodriguez, said Tuesday that although the investigation found Bell’s death was not caused by a malfunction, “it doesn’t take away from the loss.”

Seven people at Macy’s in Bellevue Square were injured last December after a mechanical failure dislodged several steps.

L&I blamed that incident on poor maintenance.

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