Getting electrocuted on a work property is an ever present risk in all types of working environment.
Possible causes of electrocutions at work
Being electrocuted on a work property could be the result of:
- Faulty equipment or wiring
- Lack of training in the use of equipment
- Inadequate safety equipment or lack of training in the use thereof
- Ignorance or absence of safe working procedures
Possible outcomes of being electrocuted on a work property
Depending on circumstances and voltages involved, injuries caused by getting electrocuted on a work property can include:
- Electric shock: Blocking electrical signals flowing between the brain and muscles, electric shock can stop the affected individual’s heart beating properly; cause muscle spasms and/or prevent a person from breathing.
- Electrical burns: Electrical currents passing through the body heat tissue along the path of the current. Depending on the voltage and duration of the flow through the body, this can cause deep burns that may require major surgery and could be permanently disabling.
- Loss of control over muscles: Electric shocks can cause painful muscle spasms strong enough to dislocate joints or break bones. Losing muscle control can cause a person to be unable to ‘let go’ and escape an electric shock. It could also result in an individual falling from height or being thrown into structures or machinery nearby.
Overall, accidents at work involving electrocutions can cause injuries ranging in severity from minor cuts and bruises to permanent disability and even death.
Employers and employees
Employers are required by law to protect workers against workplace accidents. This means they have a duty to:
- Ensure wiring and equipment are well maintained and in safe working order
- Provide adequate training in the use of equipment
- Provide suitable protective equipment and training in the use thereof
- Have safe working procedures in place
- Ensure workers are made aware of, and instructed in, safe working procedures
Employees must also help to prevent work related injuries by following instructions on safe working procedures; using equipment responsibly and in accordance with training received and reporting potentially faulty or damaged equipment or wiring immediately.
Accident Advice Helpline
If you were injured by electrocution at work through someone else’s negligence, error or unruly behaviour during the past three years, you may have a case for work injury compensation. Call our freephone helpline on 0800 689 0500 (landlines) or 0333 500 0993 (mobiles) to enlist the help of an Accident Advice Helpline solicitor with years of experience in handling industrial injury claims today.
Date Published: November 13, 2015
Author: David Brown