Some elderly Lynn residents left crawling up 5 flights of stairs after elevator broken for weeks

LYNN, Mass. — Residents on the top floor of an Ocean Street apartment building have to walk up five flights of stairs every time they need to do laundry or get groceries.

“I have no food in my fridge,” said resident Donna Loncich. “Today is my first day leaving the apartment in five weeks.

Loncich said it took her half an hour to get to her room. We found her taking a break halfway up.

“If I don’t stop and sit down, I get dizzy,” she said.

“That’s unacceptable as far as the city is concerned,” said Asst. City Solicitor James Lamanna.

The city said any building with at least three floors must have a functioning elevator, but that elevator has not been functioning for several weeks, leading to several complaints.

“We’re suffering, we are suffering,” said an out-of-breath Shawn Cure, who we found going slow so he didn’t get more bruises. “I fell over the weekend. I was carried out of here in an ambulance.”

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The City of Lynn is now trying to get a court order to force the owners to put those residents in a hotel until the elevator is fixed.

“That’s been discussed,” said Gregg Clickstein of Sawyer Property Management. “We’re hoping that we can have it repaired in time and avoid that, obviously, but, again, our residents are very important to us and whatever we have to do, we’ll do.”

Clickstein who is the president of the company that manages the property said the elevator is missing a part that they recently realized after delays cannot be purchased and has to be made. He is sending someone out first thing Tuesday morning to pick up the piece from the elevator to re-create. He plans to have the elevator working within a couple of days.

The city said that’s too late and wants them to voluntarily place residents in hotels before a court order.

“We can deal with it not working for a day or two because of maintenance,” Cure said. “That’s fine, but a month? I saw a woman crawling up these steps. One was sleeping in her car in the middle of the day. From what I can tell she spent the day in her car because she didn’t want to climb the stairs.”

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