Statistics indicate that about 30,000 people suffer injuries related to electrocution on an annual basis in the United States. While many electrocutions are job-related, there are also many hazards that may cause electric shock outside of the workplace. No matter where an electrocution occurs, it’s important to learn about your legal rights following your accident.
At the law firm of Egenberg, APLC, we meet with people who have suffered injuries from electrocutions. During your consultation, we will evaluate what happened and assess your legal rights. If you have been injured in an electrical accident or have lost a loved one due to an electrocution in or around New Orleans, please do not hesitate to call today or contact us online to discuss your legal options.
Injuries Caused by Electrocutions
When an electrical current runs through a person’s body, it can have various painful effects, many of which can be serious or even fatal. Some injuries that commonly result from electric shock include:
Cardiac arrest – Electrical currents can cause fibrillation of the heart, which can lead to a heart attack or heart failure.
Tissue damage – A current can cause serious damage to the muscles, skin, and soft tissue that it travels through.
Burns – Many electric shock victims suffer serious thermal and contact burns at the entrance and exit site of the current, or in any area that came in contact with electricity.
Neurological damage – Electric shock can damage the peripheral nerves, motor neurons, and the central nervous system.
Electrocution-related falls – Often, an electrical shock will cause a person to fall down, which can be particularly dangerous if the person is working at a high place at the time of the accident.
While “electrocution” is regularly used to describe any type of electrical accident, an electrocution technically refers to death due to electric shock. While death by electrocution is often associated with high voltage shocks, a lower voltage current can also lead to death if it flows through the body for a long enough period of time to stop the heart. If the current passes through vital organs, organ failure may also lead to death.
Electrical injuries typically require extensive medical treatment, often including hospitalization or even time in an intensive care unit or burn center. Some neurological injuries can lead to lasting impairments and disabilities. A large number of electrical accident victims must miss work while they recover. They also may experience severe pain and suffering from their injuries.
The good news is that many electric shock victims have the right to seek financial recovery for the losses they incurred due to their injuries. The key to determining your legal rights after an electrical injury is to determine what—and who—caused the accident. At Egenberg, APLC, we have the resources to investigate the causes of an electrocution so that we can best advise our clients of their rights and the proper way to proceed.
Common Causes of Electrocutions
If you suffer an electric injury from a lightning strike, it is obviously no one’s fault but Mother Nature and no one can be held liable for your injury-related losses. However, the vast majority of electrical injuries are not caused by nature, but instead by the negligence of another party. Some of the common causes of electrocutions include the following:
- Insufficient insulation on electrical wires
- Contact with energized equipment
- Improperly installed electrical systems or equipment
- Defective electrical systems or wires
- Unfinished or ungrounded electrical systems or wires
Electrical accidents can occur in many places, including in your place of work, your home, or another party’s property or business. To obtain financial recovery for your losses, you must identify the right party from whom to seek compensation. This determination will depend on where and how your accident occurred.
Financial Recovery After an Electrical Injury
There are different ways to seek compensation for your losses depending on the circumstances of your accident. The following are some options for financial relief:
If your accident happened outside of work and was due to a defective product, you can file a products liability lawsuit against the manufacturer. Products liability claims require that you prove the product was defectively designed, was defectively assembled, or came with inadequate warnings of the potential risks of using the product.
If your accident occurred on another party’s property or business, you may be able to file a premises liability claim against that party. In this type of claim, you must prove that the party had a duty to keep the property free from hazards and negligently failed to do so. One example of this is if a grocery store has exposed or faulty wires, or if a construction crew leaves wires exposed where passersby may come into contact with them.
If your electrical accident happened at work, the methods of obtaining financial relief are different than if it happened outside of work. This is because most employers are required to carry workers’ compensation insurance that will provide benefits to employees who are injured on the job. In this case, you do not have to prove that your employer was negligent to receive benefits for your medical costs, lost wages, and any disability payments.
If you lost a loved one due to electrocution, you may have the right to file a wrongful death claim against any negligent parties or file for workers’ compensation death benefits if the electrocution was job-related. While compensation can never bring back your loved one, it can help you with your financial losses and provide a sense of justice for your loss.
After an electrical accident, you should always consult with an experienced electrocution attorney who can inform you of your legal rights and can help you recover in the appropriate manner.
Contact the Premier New Orleans Electrocution Law Firm for Help
Egenberg, APLC understands how serious electrical injuries can be and that the resulting legal cases can be complex. We know how to protect the rights of injured accident victims and we will do everything in our power to obtain the maximum compensation for our clients. These cases are extremely time-sensitive, so please contact our firm today for a free consultation so we can inform you of your rights. Call us at 504-229-5700 or contact us online today.