Man airlifted to hospital after 'falling down lift shaft'
A MAN has been airlifted to hospital with "severe injuries" after he reportedly fell down four floors of a lift shaft in a Bolton town centre office building.
The 34-year-old male lift engineer was working on a lift in Elizabeth House in Back Spring Gardens when he fell and became trapped under the lift at about 11am today.
It is understood that the lift moved down on top of him after he fell - although some reports also suggest that he was working on top of the lift and he became trapped when it moved upwards.
Crowds of people gathered in shock around the building while the man was brought out to the helicopter, which had landed on nearby a patch of wasteland.
A call had been made to the fire service reporting "banging and screaming" below the lift.
An air ambulance helicopter, paramedics, police and fire crews were involved in the rescue at Elizabeth House, which is home to the Job Centre and Bolton's Department for Work and Pensions staff.
Patricia Firth, aged 50, from Deane, said: “It’s a bit of a shock really. We thought it was a bomb scare at first.
“One minute everything was normal and the next, there was a number of sirens and all these people started gathering around.
“We’ve seen the paramedics and police go into the building so it must be something really serious.”
Natalie Plant, aged 24, from Morris Green, said: “We saw the helicopter landing as we were walking down Ashburner Street. It felt like it was going to land on top of us it was so loud.
“Then we saw all these fire engines and ambulances screeching up.
“Someone said a man has been hurt in a lift, I hope he’s okay.”
It is not known how serious his injuries are at this stage.
A police spokesman said: “At 11.01am police received a call to say a man had fallen down four floors from a lift shaft and was trapped.
“The fire service was already in attendance by the time the police arrived.
“The man was rescued by 11.16am. He was conscious and breathing. He had injuries to his arm and his leg but they are not thought to be life threatening.
“He was found by security and his legs had been trapped by the lift.”
Ian Read, watch manager at Bolton Central fire station, said: “He sustained severe injuries to his arm and legs.
“The mountain bike paramedics were the first on the scene and there was good working between paramedics and the fire crews.
“The man was given pain relief while crews used the lift mechanism to wind it very slowly.”
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