If you work in construction, you understand that your job may come with certain risks. Physical labor and the use of heavy tools and machinery could make it more likely that you will experience some type of injury, which is why safety standards on any type of Washington construction site are critical. One of the most common reasons for accidents and most pressing needs for safety standards and practices is electrical shock.
The use of machinery and tools requires electricity, and accidents involving electrical equipment have the potential to result in serious or fatal injuries. A survey of all work-related electrical accidents found that the majority of them took place in the construction industry. Most electrical accidents are preventable with proper caution, appropriate practices and properly maintained equipment.
Why do electrical accidents happen?
According to the Occupational Health and Safety Administration, the most common safety violations involving electricity included lockout and tagout procedures, wiring and failure to meet general electrical requirements. Statistics indicate that indirect or direct contact with live wires and electrical equipment was the most common reason for electricity-related fatalities on construction sites. This includes contact with electrical breakers, faulty equipment, transformers, junction boxes, light fixtures, control panels and more. The improper use and care for extension cords is also a common source of electrical accidents in construction.
Because of the complex nature of this work and high level of skill required to safely work with electricity, those coming into direct contact with electricity should be highly trained professionals. However, many electrical accidents on construction sites are those who specialize in other areas, such as roofers, service workers and laborers. Electrical safety training is critical, and this instruction should be in the workers’ native language in order to ensure understanding.
Liability for electrical accidents
If you suffered an injury involving electricity on a construction site, you could have legal options available to you. While injured workers often have grounds to pursue financial recovery through a workers’ compensation claim, that is not the only course of action available to you. It may be appropriate for you to seek recompense through the civil justice system in the form of a third-party claim.
Your injuries may be the result of faulty equipment or the negligence of a third party. A careful assessment of your case will help you understand the specific legal options available to you. You don’t want to leave any money on the table, which is why it may be helpful to learn more about how you can fight for the full and fair recovery you deserve.