Elderly man's legs amputated after being crushed by elevator

A man in his 80s had both of his legs amputated in surgery after they were crushed in an elevator accident on Tuesday morning, Ottawa police say.

Technical Standards and Safety Authority investigating elevator function

Investigators stand outside a senior citizens co-op at 220 Viewmount Dr. in Ottawa, where an elderly man's legs were severely crushed on Tuesday. (CBC News)

A man in his 80s had both of his legs amputated in surgery after they were crushed in an elevator accident on Tuesday morning, Ottawa police said.

Neighbours identified the man as Edward Stevens, a retired minister who had worked as a missionary in India.

The co-operative housing development is for Christian seniors. (CBC News)
The man's legs were crushed in the elevator of a Christian co-op building for seniors at 220 Viewmount Dr., near Merivale and West Hunt Club roads, at about 8:15 a.m. ET.

His legs were pinned and "severely crushed" between the floor of the elevator and a floor of the building, paramedics said. He had been trying to get from the second floor to the first floor.

It's not yet known how the man came to be trapped in such a way.

He suffered multiple fractures and other injuries, and was conscious when paramedics arrived. Paramedics managed to stabilize the pinned man until an elevator technician manually lowered the elevator to free him.

Both of the man's legs were amputated in surgery later Tuesday, police said. He remains in critical condition.

Neighbours who live on the same floor as Stevens said he lives in the co-op with his wife. His name has not been released by police.

'It certainly concerns me'

Administrators at the Eastern Ontario Christian Senior Co-op said counsellors are being brought in to help residents deal with the incident.

Co-op resident Lenore Dunn says when she moved in about a year and a half ago, the manager told her the elevator had been installed about two years previously. (CBC News)
Resident Lenore Dunn said she's been living in the co-op for more than a year. When she moved in, she was told by the manager that the elevator had been installed recently.

"I have a bad hip so I inquired of the manager about the elevator and she said it was only two years old, it was brand new, and that it was checked once a month, so that I hadn't any reason to be concerned," Dunn said.

"It certainly concerns me. Because of the age of the people who are in the building, we need to be ensured of safety, for sure."

The Technical Standards and Safety Authority, which regulates all elevating devices in Ontario, is investigating with assistance from police.