According to Electrical Safety Foundation International, approximately 4,000 people are injured on the job each year due to electrical hazards, and 400 people die from those injuries. That means, on average, more than one American worker dies from electric shock each day, making electrocution the fifth leading cause of workplace fatalities.
Electrical injuries cost over $4 billion a year in economic losses, and cause electrical accident victims serious, painful, long term injuries or death.
What is the Difference Between Electrical Injuries and Electrocution?
An electrical injury is the damage that is caused when an electrical current passes through the body. An electrocution is an electrical injury that results in death.
Injuries from an electrical shock range from skin burns, damage to internal organs and other soft tissues to cardiac arrhythmias and respiratory arrest. In addition to electrocutions, common electrical injuries occurring in the workplace include:
- Electrical burns to the skin and the tissues under the skin
- Nerve damage and tissue damage from the electrical current
- Damage to the heart muscle including cardiac arrest
- Neurological damage
- Spinal cord injury when thrown by an electrical shock
- Permanent scarring and disfigurement
- Brain damage
- Breathing problems and respiratory arrest
- Loss of hearing
- Severe headaches
- Muscle pain
- Fractures from falling due electrical shock
- Amnesia, confusion, and unconsciousness
- Ruptured eardrums
Many factors determine the severity of an electrical injury in the workplace:
- The amount of voltage the victim is exposed to
- The type of electrical current entering the body
- The length of time the body is in contact with the electrical current
- The pathway the electrical current takes when passing through the body
- The accident victim’s prior state of health
- The type of electrical circuit involved
- The amount of time before help arrives
Who Can be Held Liable for Electrical Injuries Occurring in the Workplace?
If they are negligent, public utilities or third party contractors can be held liable for electrical accident injuries. For example, if the electric company allows power lines to sag, or a manufacturer improperly installed wiring in equipment, or a maintenance company failed to repair or maintain electrical wires and equipment, they may be liable for electrical accident injuries related to their negligence.
In the workplace, electrical injuries occur for a variety of reasons including:
- Substandard wiring
- Non-insulated wiring
- Failure to turn off the electricity before performing certain tasks
- Failure to provide adequate electrical warnings
- Power line cases
- Inadequate training
- Defective products or equipment
- Improperly maintained systems or equipment
Damages Recoverable for Electrical Injuries
If you are injured on the job, workers’ compensation will pay for some, but not all, of your damages. Workers’ compensation is not intended to make you “whole” following an accident on the job. If someone other than your employer caused your electrical accident injury you can file a personal injury claim to hold the negligent party responsible for your damages.
An Experienced Electrical Injury Attorney Can Assist with Your Claim
“Your Injuries are Personal to Me”
My law practice exclusively represents personal injury victims and does so with a deep understanding of their suffering and an absolute commitment to their recovery. I take your injuries personally, and that is why I directly handle all aspects of every case to ensure that you receive maximum compensation.
Call the Law Office of Michael D. Waks at 888-394-1174 or use the convenient online contact form to schedule a free consultation. You are under no obligation and you will never pay any money unless you recover damages for your injuries. I offer bilingual services as part of my comprehensive approach to legal representation and I am available 24/7 to talk to you about your case.
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