Electric shock occurs when a part of the human body contacts an electricity source and an electric current passes through the body, including skin, muscles, or hair. Humans are mostly composed of water, which makes human bodies strong conductors of electricity. Depending on the severity of the shock, symptoms and injuries may include heart attack, muscle and nerve damage, burns, or even death.
Common Causes of Electric Shock
Electric shock can occur for a variety of reasons, including damaged or frayed electrical cords, contact with an electric outlet, lighting strike, or electrical appliances contacting water. One of the more common causes of electric shock is contact with downed power lines or exposed electrical lines in buildings. Electrical companies and building owners have a responsibility to adequately maintain electrical lines and to prevent individuals from contacting these lines. If they fail to adequately maintain electrical lines, they may be liable for injuries caused by contact with the lines.
Another common cause of electric shock is contact with defective or dangerous consumer products, such as kitchen appliances, electrical tools, televisions, hair dryers, or other electrically-powered products. Manufacturers have a duty to design and sell products that are not defective or dangerous. If a manufacturer designs a defective product or fails to adequately warn consumers of the dangers of a product, manufacturers may be liable for electric shock injuries.
Electric shock injuries are also common work-related injuries. Employers are required to provide their employees with a safe workplace. Electric shock injuries often occur at construction sites when an employer fails to follow Occupational Safety and Health Administration guidelines. When an employer fails to provide a safe workplace, an employer can be liable for injuries that an employee sustains while on the job.
Injuries and Symptoms of Electric Shock
Electric shock can have severe, permanent injuries for the victim. Common symptoms from electric shock include:
- Heart attack;
- Muscle pain and contractions;
- Difficulty breathing;
- Irregular heartbeat;
- Unconsciousness; and
- Numbness tingling, paralysis, vision, hearing, or speech problems.
The type and severity of these symptoms depend on several factors, including the following:
- Voltage type and strength;
- Length of time one is in contact with the electricity;
- Contact point of the electricity and how it moves through one’s body;
- Medical condition and age of the person; and
- How quickly the person is treated.
If you suffer any of these injuries, you should immediately call 911 for assistance. It is important to also understand that the person seeking to help a victim of an electric shock must be careful when assisting the victim in order to prevent a second electrical shock.
Contact Our Personal Injury Attorneys
If you or a loved one has been the victim of an electric shock, please contact our experienced personal injury attorneys. Our attorneys have decades of experience handling personal injury lawsuits. We will investigate the cause of the electric shock and identify the parties responsible for causing your injury. You may be able to recover financial compensation for your pain and suffering as well as past and future medical expenses and lost wages. Your initial consultation is always free and we work on a contingency fee basis. This means we do not collect any money unless and until we are successful in recovering money for you.