Because of how dangerous electricity can be, caution should be taken whenever you handle power cords and electrical devices. In a Wisconsin workplace, the risks of electrical shock increase. That is because according to WebMD, about a thousand people each year die due to an electrical shock, and most of those deaths occur because of injuries sustained on the job.
Electric shock is commonly associated with producing burns. Contact with electricity can result in anything from minor burns that require little treatment to major burns that necessitate emergency care. Usually, a person will suffer burns on the hands, the heels or the head, where people are more likely to make contact with electricity.
Electric shocks can produce other injuries than burns. When a person is shocked, the electricity may forcefully contract the muscles and cause the person to fall down. Fall injuries can produce additional internal injuries, including damage to muscles, nerves, bones or organs. General pain may indicate broken bones, while pain in the chest or abdominal areas may indicate organs or muscles have sustained damage.
Electric shocks, especially high voltage shocks, can be life threatening. The current sent through the body of a person can travel to the heart and induce cardiac arrest. Some people suffer heart failure and require emergency medical help, such as CPR, to attempt to revive them or preserve life until an ambulance arrives. Electricity can also damage the brain and produce seizures or other neurological disorders.
Workplaces should exercise proper training to help prevent electric shocks from occurring. Water, for example, can conduct electricity. Workers who avoid standing water while working with electrical devices may minimize the risk of sustaining a shock. Other safety measures include replacing frayed electrical cords and staying inside during thunderstorms that produce lightning strikes.
This article is written to provide general information and is not to be interpreted as legal advice.