Electrocution and Electric Shock Accidents

It’s not surprising that the majority of electrical accidents occur in the workplace. According to research published by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, electrocution is the fifth leading cause of work-related deaths in the country, and more than 500 workers die by electrocution at their jobsites each year. Of course, employees whose jobs place them in close proximity to electrical sources are at the highest risk for electrical burns, electrocution and other electricity-related injuries.

If you live in the state of Florida and you are an employee who has experienced an electrical injury on the jobsite, you may be eligible to file for workers’ compensation benefits to cover your expenses. Nearly all private and public employers in the state are required to carry this type of insurance, which provides benefits for employees who experience an injury that arises out of and in the course of their employment. If you have been injured in an electric shock accident, or if your loved one has been electrocuted, there are certain parameters you must follow and deadlines you should meet in order to qualify for these benefits. Future Firm Law can help guide you through the process.

Electrocution and Electric Shock Accidents

Employees working in the following fields have been identified as having an especially high risk of electrical or electrocution accidents:

  • Utility workers
  • Manufacturing workers
  • Construction workers
  • Electricians

It’s an unfortunate fact that around 9% of fatal injuries on construction sites are the result of electrocution, and there are several more electrical hazards construction workers are exposed to on a regular basis. Electrical hazards in the workplace can cause explosions, fires and shocks and electrocutions. The injuries sustained in an electrical accident range from minor to catastrophic, and there can be a litany of short and long term health struggles a worker may experience after an electrical shock.

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Electric Shock and Electrocution Are Not the Same

Electric shock can occur for a variety of reasons– a lack of safety gear on machines, ungrounded power supplies, wear and tear in wiring or contact with overhead or underground electrical wires. The difference between electric shock and electrocution is literally life and death–electrocution is the term used when a person who has suffered from an electrical shock passes away from their injuries.

Some of the most common types of electric shock injuries include:

  • Tissue, muscle and nerve damage
  • Neurological damage
  • Internal bleeding
  • Respiratory and cardiac arrest
  • Brain injuries
  • Burns
  • Organ damage
  • Heart attack

Electrocution is caused by the sudden and involuntary introduction of large amounts of electricity into the human body. This electric power which is introduced into the body is so powerful that it actually stops the heart and causes death to the victim. In cases of low-level electric shock, there might not be any noticeable visual marks at all. But in the instance of high-level electrocution, there are very visible external visual indicators, such as burning of the skin and hair. Electrocution is usually a result of an accident, but is, many times, preventable.

Liability for Electric Shock Injuries

Employees injured in an electric shock accident will often experience steep medical bills, and will require an extended recovery time, making work obligations impossible. They may also have troubling emotional or psychological side effects due to the trauma. Regardless of who was at fault, Florida employees who have been injured in electrical accidents may file for benefits through their workers’ compensation. In addition, family members who have lost a loved one because of electrocution can pursue death benefits through the employee’s workers’ compensation insurance.

As is often the case with insurance companies, they are likely to try and limit the workers’ compensation payout or deny coverage altogether, making the process difficult and painstaking. Anyone who has been injured by an electrical shock needs to have experienced attorneys on their side to deal with the insurance companies. Future Firm Law will insure you receive all the benefits to which you are entitled.