It is estimated that between 500 and 1,000 people, more often men, die from electric shock each year in the United States. Many of these injuries occur during work-related accidents. The construction industry, manufacturing industry and the electrician trades are the occupations with the highest proportion
How severe an electric shock injury is depends on many factors, such as the duration, the pathway (where the current travels through the body), and the amount and current of the electricity. High-voltage shock generally results in a greater severity of injuries than low-voltage.
As previously mentioned, burns are the most common sequelae of electric shock injuries. Burns may be severe at the point of contact with the electrical source, often the hands, head, and feet. Internal injury to organs may occur along the pathway of the electric shock, causing multiple organ damage. Flame burns can occur if clothes become ignited. Flash burns may occur to large areas of exposed skin when victims of electric shock are nearby when electrical arcing occurs.
Burns as a result of electric shock are a frequent reason for admission to burn units. Burns may be extensive and severe, requiring prolonged treatment and rehabilitation, and resulting in significant disability.
Victims of electric shock are often thrown long distances by the force of the shock, resulting in secondary injuries related to falling or being thrown. Spinal cord injuries, fractures and head injuries may add to the injury burden, complicating burn injuries. Neurological deficits may also occur, and may persist for life, either due to the electric shock itself or due to head injury from falling or being thrown. In addition, it may result in lethal cardiac arrhythmias leading to cardiac arrest. Without proper and immediate interventions, such as CPR and defibrillation, victims in cardiac arrest may not survive.
Unless a victim of cardiac arrest or severe burns, most people who suffer a shock survive their injuries. They may, however, require extensive treatment and hospitalization, as well as rehabilitation. injuries can result in enormous medical bills, in addition to physical and emotional pain and suffering.
If you or a loved one has sustained an injury, it is important for you to know your legal rights. You may be entitled to compensation if the injury occurred as a result of faulty equipment, third-party negligence, unsafe working conditions or other factors. Seeking legal advice protects your rights and ensures that you or your loved one will be taken care of.