While often overlooked, electrocutions are one of the four biggest causes of workplace accidents and fatalities in America. Construction workers are at an unusually high risk of electrocution. Why do construction workers get electrocuted so much, and what happens if they get hurt?
Electrocution On Construction Sites
Whether they realize it or not, construction workers operate constantly around electrical equipment and live circuits, placing them at a risk of potentially severe injury. They may accidentally make contact with a live wire while performing construction on a building, or they may accidentally cut into a power line while excavating a site. They can also be electrocuted by making contact with the electrical circuit of a machine currently in use, particularly heavy equipment that may have deadly amounts of electricity running through them.
How Contractors Fail to Prevent Electrocutions
There are a number of ways that people can potentially prevent electrocution, ranging from simple measures like providing workers with insulated gloves, to using lockout or tagout systems when using high-voltage equipment. Unfortunately, some contractors will avoid giving their employees adequate protective gear, or will circumvent systems intended to prevent electrocution. The result is predictable: more construction workers get electrocuted, suffering potentially severe injuries and possibly dying as a consequence.
The Consequences of Being Electrocuted
Electrocutions can cause sudden and severe injuries to anyone who experience them. These include, but are not limited to:
- Burn injuries, particularly at the contact site
- Uncontrollable muscle contractions and spasms
- Damage to muscles and nerves
- Damage to heart, including potential cardiac arrest
- Internal injuries from tissue damage
The extent of a person’s injuries are not always obvious, and can vary wildly depending on how severe the shock was and how long they were being electrocuted. Even someone who is seemingly fine after being electrocuted should see a doctor afterwards for a full medical examination.
What You Can Do
If you or someone you love has been electrocuted while working on a construction site, you should first see a doctor. After that, however, you should speak to a lawyer with experience handling construction injury cases. They can help to go over your case and determine what legal strategy might work best for your needs.
For more than 40 years, the Drucker Law Firm has been providing personal and quality legal services to individuals, universities, and corporations throughout the New York City and Tri-State area. We have represented three generations of clients in personal injury cases, as well as immigration and general litigation matters. If you have a legal issue related to personal injury law, please give us a call at (718) 458-1489 to schedule a consultation or visit our contact page.