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Meriden tenants say broken elevators leave elderly and disabled stranded in high-rise for days | EXCLUSIVE

The building's owners hung up on FOX61 while the property management office claims they are waiting for special parts to arrive.

MERIDEN, Conn — Tenants of a Meriden apartment complex say the elevators in their apartment building are constantly broken, leaving people stranded on the upper floors for days at a time.

Describing the situation as dangerous, residents of the 15-story building called 80 Hanover Apartments, contacted FOX61. The tenants described elevator rides that sound more like Disney's "Tower of Terror" ride that an apartment complex.

"Doors open and close. It’s a death trap,” explained tenant Raymond Harris.

The high-rise building is occupied by low and fixed-income tenants, many of whom are elderly or disabled. Two towers nearby are under different ownership. 

On Tuesday, one of the elevators appeared to be functioning after being out of service for about a week, but the door wouldn’t stay shut.

“My husband had a procedure done and we had to walk up seven flights up and down and he wasn’t able to do this. It’s not like it just started. This is an ongoing thing,” said tenant Zoraida Rosa.

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Tenants said both elevators are broken more than they are working. Sometimes they are down for up to a week, which forces tenants to take the stairs.

“I’m almost 60 years old myself and I’m carrying people up and down the stairs. I had back surgery. It doesn’t make any sense at all,” said Harris.

But taking the stairs simply isn’t an option for everyone. The building’s upper floors are occupied by several elderly and disabled residents.

“They need to get downstairs. Can’t get their food, can’t get their medications. Stuck in the apartments for days. It’s ridiculous. Then they want to raise our rent!” said Rosa.

The property management office said the elevators are old and the company is waiting on special parts to arrive.

“We need it quick. We don’t need it in three days. We don’t need to hear they are working on it, a part or a piece is coming. No! We live here!” said Rosa.

State records show the building is owned by Leza and Stephan Gashi and their LLC called Hanover Management. FOX61 placed a call to them which ended quickly.

A man who identified himself as Stephan answered the phone and asked how we were doing but when tenant concerns were raised, the phone disconnected.

Aside from the elevator issue, tenants said many of the exterior door locks are broken. They’ve found homeless people sleeping in the hallways. Meriden code enforcement and Mayor Kevin Scarpati said they’ve been in touch with the owners to express the seriousness of the concern.

Matt Caron is a reporter at FOX61 News. He can be reached at mcaron@fox61.com. Follow him on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

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