Your author (KW) speaks with attorney Guy Gruppie (GG) about pandemic-related vertical-transportation (VT) litigation.

by Kaija Wilkinson

"In early June, Guy Gruppie was closing in on his third month working from home (rather than in his office on the ninth floor of a 12-story mixed-use tower in downtown Los Angeles) when he spoke with your author about elevators, escalators and moving walks in the COVID-19 era — specifically, legal action owners, operators and others involved in the industry could face related to the situation. Gruppie has authored numerous legal papers geared toward the VT industry, including “Uncommon Perception: The Common Carrier Duty Does Not Rule Out Defense Verdicts in Elevator and Escalator Accident Trials.” In the paper, published in Federation of Defense & Corporate Council Quarterly in 2009, Gruppie lays out the history and meaning of “common carrier,” which is an entity possessing “the utmost caution characteristic of very careful prudent men or the highest degree of vigilance, care and precaution,” according to Prosser and Keeton.