Completing electrical tasks at home carries many risks, including injury by electrocution or burns from accidental contact with live components; injury by fire from faulty electrical installations or equipment injury by explosions caused by unsuitable electrical appliances or ignition of flammable vapours (spray paint, heater fuels, etc) by static electricity. Electrocution may also cause injuries by falling from ladders.
In order to prevent personal injuries, it is vital to perform visual checks of appliances, plugs and cables before using them and never using:
- Damaged or faulty electrical appliances
- Appliances that are not suitable for intended tasks
- Appliances in wet surroundings unless they are protected by correctly rated circuit breakers, isolators, etc
- Appliances with damaged plugs or cables
It is also important not to:
- Overload sockets with multiple adaptors without fuses
- Attempt repairs on electrical appliances without the necessary know-how
If you do decide to undertake a repair yourself, prevent accidental injuries by not:
- Leaving appliances plugged in during repairs
- Poke around inside appliances with knives and other unsuitable tools
- Replace internal fuses with bits of wire
- Repair cables loosely with tape
- Leave plugged in, open appliances lying around
- Undertake repairs or operate appliances with wet hands
Faults on older electrical equipment can often be recognised by burn stains or marks; bits of dangling tape or visible internal wires. With new appliances, this is rarely the case.
When new equipment is faulty
If recently purchased faulty electrical appliances result in injuries by electrocution, fire or explosions, you may be entitled to claim compensation. To be eligible for personal injury compensation, you must provide evidence proving that your injury and any damages (caused by fire, explosion or flooding in case of a faulty washing machine or dishwasher, for instance) you may wish to claim for were caused by faulty equipment, as opposed to misuse thereof.
Witness statements and contact details; photographs of your injuries and the area affected; medical reports showing the extent of your injury and treatments; receipts for the equipment and necessary expenses to put things right again all count as evidence to support claims. This also applies for injuries sustained through slips, trips and falls.
How to claim
You can get confidential, obligation-free advice and enlist the help of skilled Accident Advice Helpline solicitors by calling the company’s freephone number or filling in the compensation calculator on the firm’s website.