A woman crushed to death by a lift was reportedly carrying a large 36kg box when it hit a switch and caused the lift to plummet while the door was still open.

Carrie O’Connor is believed to have been dragging the 2m heavy box inside the lift when it plunged to the first floor of her building on September 14.

The 38-year-old university professor's lifeless body was found inside the lift after it suddenly dropped and she became trapped between floors at an apartment building in Boston, US.

A resident told Boston 25 News she "heard just an ungodly scream" before running into the corridor and finding a man "in distress screaming and hyperventilating and saying 'she's dead, she's dead'."

New details have emerged in a report by the Massachusetts Office of Public Safety and Inspections which say that the box hit a switch that sent the elevator plummeting while the door was still open.

The report says the lift did not malfunction, according to 9news.

Carrie was a university professor

Footage reportedly showed the box hitting a switch which mistakenly indicated the door was closed, causing the lift to drop.

An autopsy showed that Carried died from “traumatic asphyxiation,” the NY Post reports.

Fellow tenant Leanne Scorzoni told  WCVB Boston : "It was horrifying. It wasn’t a cry. I can’t even describe what it was.”

The incident happened at an apartment building in Boston, US
Fellow tenants spoke out following the tragic incident

She described how another tenant saw Carrie just moments before the accident.

She continued: “He was helping her with a box into the building, and he was going up the stairs and he had told her, ‘Hey just be careful,’ because…you have to pull the door across and then step in and then press the button. However if you have something in there, it can trigger a sensor.

“He believes that whatever she was trying to get in there hit the sensor and then it started moving.”