Every year, thousands of workers are killed or seriously injured in electrocution accidents at work. Certain types of workers are at heightened risk, such as construction workers, electricians, and utility line workers. When an accident happens, the consequences can be shattering, not only for the victim, but also his or her family. The impacts of a death or serious injury are devastating, but you do not have to face them alone. We can help you recover compensation for your medical bills, income losses, and other losses, while protecting your legal rights.
At the Law Offices of Randolph Rice, we have years of experience fighting for injured workers in Maryland. Randolph Rice is a skilled attorney with a record of results that speaks for itself. If you or your spouse was shocked at work in Maryland, Randolph Rice is here to help you explore your legal options. To arrange a free legal consultation and find out whether you could have a case, call our law offices at (410) 694-7291, or contact the Law Offices of Randolph Rice online.
Statistics on Electrocution Accidents at Work in Maryland
The Electrical Safety Foundation International (ESFI) reports that anywhere from approximately 1,640 to 2,950 workers were injured in electrical accidents during the period from 2003 to 2017, with a low in 2016 and a high in 2005. During the same period, electric accidents caused between 134 and 254 worker fatalities annually, with a low in 2015 and a high in 2004.
A disproportionately large number of these injuries and fatalities occurred in the construction industry, where OSHA has singled out electrocution as one of the industry’s top “Fatal Four” hazards. According to OSHA, which is the Occupational Safety and Health Administration, electrocution was the number three cause of death in the construction industry during 2018, causing 86 fatalities that year. That accounts for almost 9% of the construction worker fatalities reported in 2018, a number surpassed only by fatal falls (338) and strikes from objects (112).
About Electric Burns + Shock Injuries in the Workplace
There is a common misconception that high voltage is what causes death or injury by electric shock. In fact, death or injury is caused by the current, which is measured in amperes or “amps.” Human fatalities have occurred at just 42 volts, which means even low voltage appliances or machines can be extremely dangerous to work around.
Painful, powerful shocks can occur if a worker comes into contact with just 0.01 amps. When the strength of the current increases to a level of 0.1 to 0.2 amps, even brief contact can be fatal. The greater the strength of the current and the longer the duration of contact, the higher the likelihood of death or serious injury. Depending on these factors, electrical accidents can lead to injuries or health problems that include:
- Amputation, which may be necessary if part of the body is too seriously burned or injured to treat successfully
- Broken bones or dislocated joints, which can result from the intense muscle contractions that are caused by electric shocks
- Cardiac arrest
- Difficulty breathing
- Internal or external burns
- Nerve damage
What Are Some Common Causes of Workplace Electric Shocks?
There are many types of hazards and safety violations that can lead to preventable electrocution accidents. No matter how carefully you perform your job, you can still be endangered by issues like inadequate safety gear, unsafe jobsite conditions, or coworkers making serious mistakes. Possible causes of workplace electric injuries include, but are not limited to, the following:
- Coworkers or supervisors who are negligent, reckless, or even under the influence of drugs or alcohol
- Exposed wiring
- Failure to train employees properly
- Faulty or defective wiring
- Lack of proper jobsite supervision
- Lack of worker safety equipment or missing jobsite safety features
- Markings or labels that are incorrect or missing
Maryland Compensation for Workplace Electrical Shocks
Depending on the details of your accident, there may be a few ways for you to pursue financial compensation for a workplace injury. For instance, you may qualify to receive workers’ compensation benefits in Maryland. Workers’ comp is designed to replace part of your wages, while also providing some additional benefits for job training, medical care, and, in the case of a fatal accident, death benefits for surviving dependents (generally, the worker’s spouse and children). However, while workman’s comp can provide valuable benefits, other sources of compensation may be available as well. For example, you may be able to sue for personal injury.
Filing a workers’ comp claim may prevent you from suing your employer for negligence. However, you may still have a case against other parties whose negligence contributed to your injuries. For example, if you were injured because a contractor, property owner, or equipment manufacturer made errors or acted carelessly, you could have a lawsuit against that entity or individual. Various options may be open to you and your family, which is why it is important to weigh different strategies with a seasoned attorney for workplace shocks in Maryland.
Maryland Electrocution at Work Lawyer for Injured Employees
You deserve fair compensation for burns, fractures, or other electrocution injuries you suffered on the job. Talk to an experienced attorney who you can trust to handle your case with diligence, professionalism, and care. For a free legal consultation, contact the Law Offices of Randolph Rice online, or call 24 hours, seven days a week, at (410) 694-7291 for assistance throughout Maryland.