Lift accident victims receive 1000 euro

The RUG will pay thirteen of the people involved in the lift accident that occurred in January 2019 one thousand euro each in compensation.
By Giulia Fabrizi / Translation by Sarah van Steenderen

The amount serves as an advance to the eventual claims settlement. ‘Everyone who’s made a liability claim will receive the amount’, says RUG spokesperson Jorien Bakker.

‘The sum is independent of any medical costs or other expenses the students and employees have claimed.’ According to Bakker, thirteen of the fourteen victims have made a liability claim.

The RUG will determine the claims settlement for each individual case.

Lift accident

The lift accident happened in January of 2019 at the medical sciences building at the Antonius Deusinglaan. A lift containing fourteen RUG students and employees, fell from the ninth floor, got stuck between the fifth and six floors because of the emergency brake, and fell all the way down at a speed of approximately thirty kilometres an hour while emergency personnel were trying to rescue people from the lift.

One of the victims was taken to the UMCG after the accident. The university immediately started investigating the possible cause of the accident.

Board president Jouke de Vries said that the victims, in addition to slight physical injuries, had mainly suffered psychological complaints. ’You can imagine what it’s like being in an accident like that. Some people don’t really know whether they can trust this kind of machinery again. They’re not sure whether they can still safely use lifts’, said De Vries when the investigation’s results were announced.


The investigation showed that neither the lift’s balance nor its breaks had been properly calibrated. The defect in the brakes had been discovered earlier, but the maintenance company hadn’t fixed it properly, if at all. The balance hadn’t been tested correctly, an independent certification agency determined, which meant the lift cage was heavier than the counterweight.

The eleven other lifts in the building were subsequently checked as well, but they were all in fine working order.


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