There can be many different types of hazards present at construction sites. Sharp corners and protruding nails abound. Large or heavy objects can be improperly secured, causing injuries and damage when they fall. One of the more insidious dangers that can be present at construction sites cannot even be seen. Electrocution can occur when contact is made with a ‘live wire’ or other energized source, or with a metal surface that can conduct the charge to an unprotected body part.
As nearly all modern structures have electricity the danger of being shocked can never be discounted. In circumstances where power is flowing personal protective equipment such as rubber gloves can be worn by specialized workers. There can also be a danger of electrocution when using power tools during wet weather, as construction sites are often not fully shielded from the elements and even a little bit of water can be enough to transfer a possibly fatal shock.
There are many ways to prevent or minimize the risk of electrical injuries. GFCIs or ground fault circuit interrupters, which are also common in many household electrical outlets, automatically prevent people from being shocked. It can also be dangerous to use improperly grounded extension cords or cords that are not compatible with the site’s power tools.
Electricity can also present other dangers. Worn or improper wiring can lead to electrical fires being started. OSHA publishes guidelines which should be followed in order to maintain worker safety. Receiving a shock can cause muscles to spasm or heart arrhythmias.
Injuries and burns from electrocution can sometimes be difficult to diagnose. They are unlike heat or chemical-based burns in that much of the injured tissue can be beneath the skin. If you believe that you have sustained an electrical injury it is important to contact a medical professional to evaluate the seriousness of the damage, and then you should contact an experienced personal injury attorney to determine the kind of recovery you may be entitled to.