Electrical Injuries: Causes, Prevention And Seeking Compensation
According to research, approximately 1,000 Americans die yearly due to electrical injuries, and almost half of these deaths occur due to high-voltage electrical injuries. When a high-voltage electrical injury doesn’t result in death, the chances are, it will result in the dysfunction of a victim’s multiple tissues or organs. Since electricity is a crucial part of life, you must learn the causes of electrical injuries and how to prevent electrical injuries so you can play your role in changing this dreadful reality. Most, if not all, electrical injuries are accidental and preventable.
Defining Electrical Injuries
An electrical injury happens when a physiological reaction originating from an electric current passes through the body.
Generally, the severity of an electrical injury depends on;
- tissue resistance
- duration of contact and
- the density of the current
Causes of Electrical Injuries
Being in direct contact with a source of electric current is the leading cause of electrical injuries. Nonetheless, a person can get an electrical injury without being in contact with an electric current.
Below are some of the causes of electrical injuries.
- Accidental contact with power outlets
- Electric arcs
- Occupational-related exposures
An electrical injury caused by an electrical arc is an example of an electrical injury a person can get even if they are not in direct contact with the source of electric current. An electric arc can happen after an electrical breakdown of gas produces a continuous electrical discharge. When this breakdown occurs, electric current flows through the air between conductors. This can cause an arc flash or explosion, and it is that flash or explosion that can lead to an electrical injury.
How To Protect Yourself Against Electrical Injuries
As already mentioned, electrical injuries are preventable, and most electrical injuries are accidental. Below are a few preventive measures you can take to protect yourself against electrical injuries;
- Regularly inspect electrical cords for tattering, and whenever you notice fraying, repair or replace cables immediately. To prevent or slow down tattering, avoid moving your cables a lot or placing them under direct sun. Also, it would help if your favorite pet didn’t chew on cords.
- Avoid plugging in too many things in one outlet. When you overload one outlet, you overload electric circuits.
- Avoid inserting foreign objects in outlets. For example, avoid inserting your fingers in outlets. Children tend to insert their fingers in outlets. So, if you have children, always be alert to ensure they don’t insert their fingers in outlets.
- Avoid handling electrical appliances while wet and avoid putting electrical appliances near water. For instance, do not put your toaster near the sink.
- Double insulate your power tools to ensure there is an extra barrier between electricity and everyone that comes in contact with the power tools.
- Avoid handling fallen wires. It would be best for you to report fallen wires to the necessary authorities.
Receiving Compensation for an Electrical Injury
Even after taking the above preventative measures, you might find yourself with an electrical injury because of no fault of yours. Sometimes, other people’s negligence can cause electrical injuries. You have the right to seek compensatory damages from another party if their negligence causes you to suffer a severe electrical injury.
Construction site workers are at a high risk of sustaining electrical injuries. Overhead power lines, exposed electrical wires, and buried electrical wires all pose a threat to such workers. If you sustained your electrical injury at work and believe that negligence on another party’s side led to your injury, consult an experienced personal injury attorney immediately.
Even though electrical injuries resulting from negligence are common in construction sites, other things like faulty electronics can lead to such injuries. If a faulty electronic caused your severe electrical injury, you could file what is known as a “product liability lawsuit.” If you believe you were hurt because of a manufacturing defect, contact a personal injury attorney to learn how you should proceed with your case.
Proving liability in an electric injury lawsuit requires expertise. To prosper in an electrical injury lawsuit, you need to prove, beyond a reasonable doubt, that someone’s negligence led to your injury. You also need to prove damages incurred and that the extent of your injury is what you are claiming it to be. To successfully do all this, don’t try to go at it alone.
Contact a Fort Myers Personal Injury Lawyer Today
If you sustained an electrical injury due to someone else’s negligence and need help seeking compensation, contact a Fort Myers personal injury attorney at The Law Office of Marc. L. Shapiro, P.A. today to schedule a consultation.