NBC New York
One of the witnesses to last month's fatal elevator accident in a Manhattan office building has taken legal action in the case. Pei-Sze Cheng reports.
The Manhattan office building where a 41-year-old advertising executive was crushed to death by an elevator reopened Tuesday for the first time since the freak accident.
Suzanne Hart was boarding the car on the first floor of her Madison Avenue office on Dec. 15 when the elevator began rising. The doors did not close, and she was pressed between the elevator and shaft wall.
A man and a woman on the elevator were not physically injured but had to be treated for trauma.
Both had been trapped in the car with Hart's body for more than an hour after the elevator malfunction.
Kathleen Mullahy, the woman who witnessed Hart's horrific death, has taken steps to sue Transel Elevators, which had serviced the elevator just hours before the accident. Court papers claim she experienced significant trauma that morning.
Mullahy also named Young & Rubicam in the legal motion, which is the precursor to an official lawsuit. Like Hart, Mullahy worked for the advertising firm, though the two did not know each other, according to the Daily News.
Mullahy's attorney said in a statement, "Our main goal is to make sure Ms. Mullahy is able to receive the help she needs to begin the healing process."
The Department of Buildings says it is focusing its investigation on the maintenance work Transel did on the elevator in the hours prior to the accident. It's also checking hundreds of other elevators serviced by the firm.
Workers returning Tuesday said it was a relief to get back.
"We've all been working from home," one worker told NBC New York. "It was a sad thing that happened, and we'd all like to get past it."
Young & Rubicam CEO David Sable did not comment on the legal action Tuesday, but said workers have "reached out to each other" and that "everybody has mourned together" over the tragedy.