Workers' Compensation - $228,000 Settlement
In this case, our client was on the job and installing siding for a construction project. While working on the building, he inadvertently struck some electrical lines and as a result was seriously injured. His injuries included a perilunate wrist dislocation, radius fracture and an assorted of cuts and lacerations. A lawsuit was filed alleging construction site negligence and a claim was filed at the Illinois Workers' Compensation Commission for injuries occurring during his employment. Between the workers' comp award and negligence settlement, a total of over $228,000 was recovered for our deserving injured client.
Electrical Dangers on the Job
The danger of electrical shock or electrocution is present in all segments of society as electricity is in use everywhere. In the home, under normal circumstances, the dangers are minimal as electrical wiring is safely contained within approved conduit, and unless electrical outlets are misused, the chances for injury are low.
But for those such as electricians, who deal with electricity each day or for those workers on construction sites, the dangers grow much larger. This is because in the construction trade, there is a high likelihood that workers may at some point come into contact with open wiring, transformers, power lines or the like. Each year, about half of the approximately 175 deaths due to electrocution, happen to workers in the construction trades. There are four basic classes of electrical injuries that may occur:
- Flame Injuries: Electricity may or may not end up travelling through the person’s body and is caused by an ignition of their clothing by arc
- True Injuries: Electricity travels through their body from an entrance site to an exit site as they become part of the actual electrical circuit
- Lightning Injuries: Most of the flow of electricity happens over the body during a short period and at very high voltages
- Flash Injuries: No electricity goes through the skin although it causes superficial burns created by arcs
What to do in the Event of Electrical Shock
In the event that a co-worker is being electrocuted, it is important to know ahead of time what the best emergency course of action would be. Of course, in such circumstances, time is of the essence and the victim should be assisted as quickly as possible, without endangering those who are attempting to help. In order, most suggest:
- Try to find the closest electrician or a person with knowledge of electricity, while calling for emergency services by dialing 911 or other means.
- Quickly examine the accident scene to determine whether the injured party is still in contact with the source of electrical current.
- Do not touch any conductors which are nearby.
- Do not touch the victim until electrical circuits have been turned off or de-energized.
- Depending on the source of the current, it may be necessary to power down at the breaker box or simply disconnect a power cord.
- If it is impossible to promptly turn off the power, it may be necessary to use a stick or other object that will not conduct electricity to move the injured person away from the source. The rescuer should wear insulating gloves and boots and proceed with great caution.
- Depending on the severity of the shock, there is always a risk of broken bones and great care should be taken when moving the victim, especially if a neck injury is suspected.
Electric shock injuries can result in injuries ranging from severe burns to cardiac arrest and death. If you or a loved one has been hurt, contact Mitchell S. Sexner & Associates LLC at 800-996-4824 for experienced and compassionate free assistance.