Broken elevators in Bridgeport apartment trap disabled residents in their homes

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Two broken elevators at North End housing complex in Bridgeport left hundreds of seniors and disabled residents trapped in their apartments.

The elevators in the apartment complex, located at 455 Trumble Ave., have been out of service for most of the week.

Resident Zoretha Fields says she is disabled and was not able to get to Bridgeport Hospital on Thursday for a needed operation due to the elevator outages.

Other residents say they have been unable to go grocery shopping or get to doctors' appointments since the elevators broke down.

The Bridgeport Housing Authority says the elevators constantly break down due to vandalism, a situation complicated by the age of the complex. They say the old age of the building makes it difficult to get replacement parts.

Bridgeport Mayor Joe Ganim and Sen. Richard Blumenthal say they reported the situation to the regional office of the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development. The officials say the local Housing Authority is in violation of its contract with the federal government and must get the elevators repaired immediately.

Just hours after News 12 Connecticut reported the situation to Mayor Ganim, an elevator repair crew was on the scene. Mayor Ganim says he was thankful for the report and that he aims to get the elevators fixed.

However, Fields says even if the elevators do get repaired quickly, she hopes to relocate. She says the situation was unfair in the first place for all the disabled people that live there.

Mayor Ganim says he's forming a task force to address the chronic problem of elevator outages in the city, with an emphasis on encouraging property owners to replace elevators put in before 1985.

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