Workplace Electrocution Accidents in Pennsylvania
The consequences of an accident at work involving electrocution of a worker can be devastating. In addition to the pain, suffering, and reduced ability to function the worker faces he or she will also face an array of practical concerns. For one, the worker may begin to wonder how can he or she pay the bills and keep the family afloat when work becomes impossible due to a severe injury. Without assistance or insurance, this can seem impossible. Thankfully most workers in Pennsylvania are automatically covered by the state’s workers’ compensation regime. That is, workers do not need to engage in any additional steps or action to secure coverage. However, they will need to file a work injury claim report with their employer to start the process.
The workers’ compensation lawyers of Schmidt, Kirides, & Rassias can assist with workers’ compensation questions and concerns after an injury at work. We can guide you through the claims process from start to finish. To schedule a free and confidential consultation, call our Philadelphia or Media, Pennsylvania law firms at (484) 679-5239.
How Big of a Risk is a Workplace Electrocution?
While an electrocution at work sounds like a danger that only an electrician would need to concern him or herself about, the truth is the risk is far more prevalent than one would assume. Theoretically, any worker who works with electronics, machinery, or other electrically powered tools or implements could suffer an electrocution injury. Frayed wires, cracks in insulation, standing water, and general wear and tear are a few of the factors that can increase the general risk of an electrocution accident. However, electrocution is a major risk in certain occupations.
Powerline Workers and Construction Workers Are Most Impacted by Electrocution Accidents
Powerline workers are employees who are probably most likely to suffer electrical or electrocution injuries above all other causes. Crane operators also require special education and training to avoid this risk. Electricians are also frequently exposed to scenarios are situations where electrical injuries are prevalent. In addition, construction workers are also highly likely to suffer an injury due to electrocution.
In fact, in the construction industry, electrocutions makes-up one of OHSA’s “fatal four.” The fatal four are the sources of injury and death that are most prevalent on a construction worksite. In addition to electrocution accidents falls, struck by object accidents, and caught in-between accidents round out the fatal four.
How Can Workers Avoid Electrocution Accidents?
When workers suffer electrocution accidents on a construction site or at the workplace, the most common reason behind the injury is the failure to adequately control electric energy. Typically this goal is accomplished through the use of lock-out and tag-out devices. However, workers may misuse these devices or make mistakes in their use. In other scenarios, workers may take a short-cut and fail to use these protective devices.
In other scenarios, electrical injuries occur due to sloppiness in design or implementation. OSHA reports that standards concerning Electrical, wiring methods, components and equipment (29 CFR 1910.305) are frequently violated when it investigates following an electrical accident. Similarly, OSHA will also frequently note problems with Electrical systems design under (29 CFR 1910.303). Thus, electrical issues that cause serious accidents can be introduced in either the design or build-out of any electrical system. Any individual who comes to work on or utilize these systems is exposed to the risk. In at least some instances, inherent system problems get worse over time due to wear and tear further increasing the risk.
What Type of Workers’ Compensation Benefits Are Available in PA?
Under Pennsylvania’s workers’ compensation system, there are several types of benefits available to injured workers. First, qualifying workers can receive payments for lost wages due to their workplace injury or electrocution. The exact amount of wage benefits one receives is contingent upon one’s disability finding and other factors. In addition to wage benefits, a worker can also receive specific loss benefits and medical benefits. Specific loss benefits are intended to compensate a worker for the loss of a limb or another body part. Medical benefits will cover your costs of care and rehabilitation.
In the case that a worker is killed on the job, it is important to note that death benefits are typically available. These benefits are available to qualifying family members.
Work with Workers’ Compensation Lawyers in Pennsylvania
The workers’ compensation lawyers of Schmidt, Kirides, & Rassias can assist with workers’ compensation questions and concerns after an injury at work. Whether you were electrocuted or suffered another type of injury, we can approach the matter strategically and proceed step-by-step. Top schedule a free and confidential consultation, please call (484) 679-5239 or contact us online today.