Electrocution Injuries on Construction Sites
Invisible and without sound or smell, electricity poses a unique danger to workers on construction sites. Electricity can only be felt; however, by the time you feel an electric shock, it is too late to protect yourself from harm. For this reason, construction site managers and employers are required to inspect each jobsite, identify potential electrical hazards, and set up necessary warning signs and barricades before allowing workers onto the jobsite. When the people responsible for maintaining a safe environment for construction workers fail to look for electrical hazards and implement proper safeguards, they should be held accountable for electrocution injuries that result.Types of Construction Site Electrocution Injuries
While electricity can cause many different types of injuries, the three most common electrocution injuries that occur on construction sites include:
- Injuries from falls or from contact with moving equipment that occurs after a worker experiences a low voltage electrical shock and can no longer safely maintain balance or physical control of the tools or equipment he or she was using when shocked.
- Severe burns or death resulting from explosive gases inadvertently ignited by electrical equipment.
- Death by electrocution or severe internal or external burns resulting from accidental contact with high voltage electrical lines or equipment.
Only workers who are qualified electricians should be allowed to work on energized electrical systems. If a worker who is not properly trained is tasked with electrical work and an electrocution injury occurs, the company, manager, or contractor in charge of the jobsite may be held accountable for the injury. Employers should also use barricades or other means to ensure workers always stay at least 10 feet from high voltage lines. For low voltage electrical systems, power lines should be completely insulated and grounded before any worker (other than qualified electricians) can work near those systems. Explosions can be prevented by not allowing any electrical devices to be operated where there is flammable or ignitable gas, vapor, liquids, or dust.
Another electricity-related safety precaution that must continuously be monitored is making sure all power cords are intact and secured so they will not come in contact with liquids, or be cut, pulled, or tripped over while in use. It’s easy for cords to move around and cause completely preventable accidents and injuries. All low and high voltage fuse boxes and control panels must also be locked, with warning signs clearly posted, so only qualified personnel can access them. Anytime these important safeguards are overlooked, bypassed, or carelessly implemented, those in charge of maintaining construction site safety may be liable for resulting electrocution injuries.Call the Legal Team at KWFDM in Atlanta for Help after an Electrocution Injury
While construction work is a dangerous job, the danger should not arise from negligent safety and training practices. If you or a loved one has sustained an electrocution injury on a job site, please contact the Atlanta construction accident lawyers at Katz Wright Fleming & Dodson, LLC to schedule a free consultation. We can determine who may be held liable for your injuries and damages, and we will work to obtain the maximum amount of compensation available to you under the law. Our attorneys can be reached today at 404-460-0101 or 888-426-2100.