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Family of Houston Texans fan may have wrongful death claim

A Houston Texans fan has fallen to his death from an escalator at Reliant Stadium during attendance at a recent preseason finale game in Texas. The preliminary investigation into the incident suggests that the man may have been attempting to slide down the outside of an escalator handrail at the time of the accident. The 25-year-old fell from the escalator, plummeting three stories down to the pavement below. The investigation is ongoing, and there has been no word that the victim's family has moved forward with a wrongful death claim or any other civil action.

The young man was rushed to the hospital for treatment but died as a result of injuries sustained during the fall. Police have issued a statement saying that they could not report that there was horseplay involved in the incident, which is being investigated as an accidental death. Reliant Park has also issued a statement confirming that an escalator accident took place at the event.

Escalators are often built and installed according to safety standards set out by the American Society of Mechanical Engineers. There is no word on whether Texas building codes required adherence to those guidelines. It is also unclear whether the escalators were equipped with any type of anti-slide feature.

As this case moves forward, the family of the young man may have additional questions about the circumstances that led to the death of their loved one. If the investigation report indicates negligence on the part of the stadium management or any other party, the family may choose to move forward with a wrongful death claim against any responsible party. If negligence is documented by competent evidence, any financial reimbursement obtained could assist them in covering the man's final expenses and other damages that are the result of the incident.

Source: Houston Chronicle, "Reliant Stadium checks escalator after fan's fatal fall," Aug. 30, 2012

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