We depend on electricity to run our homes and businesses, but it certainly comes with risks. In an extensive study conducted by the Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) concerning electrocutions in non-work-related accidents between 2004 and 2013, data showed that slightly more than 400 people die each year from electrocution and slightly more than 4,000 are injured by electrical shocks. In 2016, according to the federal Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), 82 workers – mostly on constructions sites – died from electrocution.
Often – like many other serious injuries – electrocutions can be the result of negligence.
They can sometimes occur in workplaces due to unsafe conditions. For example, in the workplace, if an employer fails to run electrical cables in a safe manner, or workers don’t observe strict lockout-tagout procedures, employees end up being the victim of an electrical accident.
Lockout-Tagout is a process which prevents injury to servicing and/or maintenance employees that can be caused by the unexpected startup of industrial machines and equipment or the release of excess energy during maintenance or servicing work. In 2017, OSHA recorded 2,877 violations of this procedure; the primary breach of these regulations was due to companies’ failure to train workers or conduct periodic inspections of lockout-tagout procedures and practices.
Lockout-Tagout notwithstanding, most accidental electrocutions usually involve:
- Defective products where the manufacturer may be to blame
- Accidents where the employer or a third party may be at fault
- Property owners who expose victims to electrical hazards
- Power companies that don’t observe all the right safety precautions.
Negligence around Electricity can Cause Serious Injury in Several Ways
Electrocutions typically affect the central nervous system. Often they can be accompanied by some form of temporary or permanent spinal cord injury, as well any or all of the following:
- Cardiac arrest
- Muscle, nerve, and tissue destruction when high voltage current passes through the body
- Thermal burns in areas that come in contact with the electrical source or where the body is grounded and the current passes through, such as feet, heels, and the head.
Most electrocution and electric shock injuries happen while at work or due to unsafe premises. If you are the victim of negligence, you may be able to make an insurance claim for all your medical bills, lost income, pain and suffering and more, based on premises liability or workplace injury, or defective products statutes. As long as we at Kaplan Lawyers PC are able to prove that your injuries were the result of someone else’s negligence, you have an excellent chance of collecting legal damages. The consultation is free. Make an appointment by calling (516) 399-2364 or using our online contact form.
Types of Electrocution-Based Injury Claims or Lawsuits
The most common electrical injuries involve contact with overhead or underground high-voltage lines. Often, contact through equipment, such as ladders, tools and cranes, cause the injuries. Other electrocutions – many non-fatal but serious nonetheless – come from contact with the electric current from wiring, transformers, or other electrical components, machines, power tools, appliances, or light fixtures.
Improper or substandard power-line maintenance is a common occurrence. Power companies are responsible for running electricity and cables; but often they share maintenance responsibility with telephone and cable companies, so it can be unclear whose negligence caused an electrocution from a “utility” line. It may be that a worker was given the wrong location of an underground power line which resulted in an accidental electrocution death when he came in contact with a “hot” buried cable.
Sometimes, a machine or some type of industrial equipment has a manufacturing or design defect – or may have been improperly serviced or maintained — thereby making it hazardous and a possible avenue to serious injury or wrongful death for which compensation may be sought through a lawsuit.
Premises liability-related electrical injuries occur when unwitting passers-by are exposed to wiring or electrical objects. Dangling wires or exposed electrical outlets in apartment complexes, hotels, stores, and other retail shops are common dangers.
Contact Our New York City Electrocution Injury Lawyers
If you have been injured by any type of electrocution, or a loved one has been killed, the skilled NYC electrocution injury attorneys at Kaplan Lawyers PC can make sure you receive all the compensation benefits you deserve. Contact us at (516) 399-2364, or fill out our online contact form to arrange a free consultation. You pay nothing whatsoever unless we are able to negotiate a compensation amount that you approve or we win your case in court.