LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) – A Louisville woman sued KFC Yum! Center officials Monday after she claims she was injured in an escalator mishap last year.
An arena spokeswoman previously confirmed that several fans were hurt in the January 31, 2019 incident after a University of Louisville women’s basketball game. Social media users reported that one escalator began moving quickly, with video showing people clustered at the bottom of the lift.
Bethany Wheatley alleges in the lawsuit that arena management, its oversight board and an escalator operator failed to warn patrons of dangerous conditions and “negligently and carelessly maintained the premises.”
She says she and other passengers fell to the bottom when the escalator malfunctioned.
The suit, filed in Jefferson Circuit Court, names the Louisville Arena Authority, arena operator AEG Management, and Otis Elevator Co. as defendants. It seeks unspecified monetary damages and a jury trial.
Yum! Center marketing director Sandra Moran did not immediately respond to request for comment. Arena authority chairman Scott C. Cox, an attorney, said he couldn’t comment on pending litigation.
An Otis spokeswoman said it's not appropriate for the company to discuss a pending legal matter.
In the lawsuit, Wheatley claims she suffered “temporary and permanent” injuries and spent money for “hospital, medical and other rehabilitation expenses” and will have to spend more in the future.
WDRB News reported the day after the incident that one man jumped off and pressed an emergency button, shutting down the escalator. A woman who said she was on the escalator posted on Twitter that she suffered a sprained knee.
Moran told WDRB last year that Kentucky’s elevator inspector was going to evaluate the escalator, one of two in the building at Second and Main streets.
It’s not known if there have been similar incidents, but arena workers at times have been stationed at the top of the escalators to control the number of people getting on.