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Damage to elevator door probed in fall at Fenway

Authorities responded to Fenway Park Friday night after a woman fell down an elevator shaft.

Barry Chin/Globe staff

Authorities responded to Fenway Park Friday night after a woman fell down an elevator shaft.

A state official said Monday that “extreme force” against the bottom of an elevator door at Fenway Park Friday night may have led to the fall of a woman down an elevator shaft.

Terrel Harris — a spokesman for the Executive Office of Public Safety and Security, which oversees the state Board of Elevator Regulations — said the finding about the force was preliminary and investigators are still conducting their review.

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He said it appears that “extreme force against the bottom of the door actually broke the fasteners and the metal back-up safety system that held the doors in place.”

Harris added that “the doors were forced from the bottom to swing into the elevator shaft, which created the gap that the victim fell through.”

He said Boston police, who are also investigating, will have to determine what brought the force against the door.

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“There are issues with the door, because the metal plate that’s there as a safety measure was bent and broken, as were the connections that hold the door in the tracks,” Harris said.

He added that the door was “in perfect working order” during its last inspection in February.

It would be impossible for one person to kick the door with as much force as it absorbed Friday night, Harris said.

Boston police declined to comment Monday, citing the ongoing investigation. On Saturday, a police spokeswoman said detectives believed the fall was an accident.

Authorities said that Lizzy Scotland, 22, of Brigantine, N.J., fell into the shaft during an incident reported at 11:17 p.m.

She plunged from the fourth floor and landed on top of the elevator car, which was stopped on the second floor.

Scotland was with other people at the time of the fall, and she was identified over the weekend by family members who asked for prayers and privacy while they focus on her recovery.

Scotland lost consciousness and was rushed to Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center with serious injuries.

A hospital spokesman said he could not disclose any details about Scotland’s condition Monday, and her family could not be reached for comment.

A spokeswoman for the Red Sox, whose principal owner, John Henry, also owns The Boston Globe, declined to comment Monday, citing the ongoing review.

The team said over the weekend that the woman had suffered serious injuries from the fall and that Fenway personnel worked alongside rescuers Friday to help her.

A spokeswoman said Saturday that the remaining elevators in the park were inspected before that night’s game as a precaution.

Harris said that during the February inspection, the elevator was granted a temporary certificate to operate.

Officials had found that the phone and emergency bell inside the elevator were not working, and another inspection was slated for next month, he said.

It was not clear Monday whether the phone and emergency bell had been repaired.

Jake Wark, a spokesman for Suffolk District Attorney Daniel F. Conley, said officials from his office are not directly involved in the investigation.

Prosecutors would become involved if there were fatalities or any “overt evidence of criminal conduct,” Wark said.

“As with any serious injury, we are monitoring the situation,” he said.

Globe correspondent Dan Adams contributed to this report. Travis Andersen can be reached at travis.andersen@
globe.com
. Follow him on Twitter @TAGlobe.
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