According to data collected by OSHA, over 4,600 workers are killed every year — most of them in the field of construction.
The so-called “Fatal Four” risks and accidents are responsible for the majority of these horrific fatalities. Falls, being struck by an object, and being caught in or struck by a machine are a part of the Fatal Four.
But the final danger that makes up the Final Four is perhaps the most devastating — and often, the most preventable: wrongful death by electrocutions.
If you or someone you know suffered from an electrocution injury, or tragically lost their lives in an electrocution accident, you are entitled to justice.
In this post, we’ll speak about the potential consequences of an electrocution injury — and what you can do to ensure that you’re not financially responsible for your medical care, treatments, and more.
We’ll then cover why it’s so important to work with an experienced personal injury or wrongful death lawyer.
Read on to make sure that you receive the compensation — and the acknowledgment of fault — that you deserve.
As you’ve likely expected, the injuries and, in some cases, permanent or long-term disabilities rendered by an electric shock are often quite severe.
What’s more, they’re much more common in South Florida and the surrounding areas than you might realize.
Burns, often severe in nature, are one of the most common consequences of an electrical accident. These burns may or may not require skin grafting, continued treatment, and other surgeries. Burns can also impact the ability of your internal organs to function properly.
You’re also likely to have broken bones due to an electrical shock, especially if you fell from a height due to the accident. You’ll likely also have muscle and nerve damage because of the power of the electrical shock running through your body.
You may also have trouble properly moving or controlling your body, and may even suffer from partial paralysis temporarily or permanently.
Many electrical injuries also cause mental health problems such as PTSD, depression, anxiety/panic attacks, and even impaired cognitive function.
You may even go into temporary cardiac arrest after the injury.
Even if you don’t experience any of these effects right away, please keep in mind that delayed onset pain and injury is very real.
In the aftermath of an electrocution accident, it can be almost impossible to know what to do.
Aside from the immediate emergency medical attention you likely received on the scene, should you seel further treatment? If so, will you have to pay for it yourself?
And what will happen to the earnings you’ve missed because the injury left you unable to work — often, for an extended period of time?
Know that, especially in a personal injury case, you should never deny yourself the medical care that you need because you’re afraid you can’t pay for it. Your employer is required to pay for your medical bills provided that you can prove the accident happened because of their negligence.
Make sure to keep a copy of your medical records and any receipts for payment on hand at all times. Also, keep a record of any conversations you’ve had with your insurance company or your employer’s insurance company. Note the date that you called and what you were told.
Remember, never accept a low offer for coverage just because you think it’s all you’ll get.
You’ll also need to notify your employer of the accident if they did not witness it. Usually, you’ll need to do this within 30 calendar days of the accident, or you run the risk of losing your right to compensation.
One huge mistake that many people make when they’ve been injured on the job?
Posting on social media before their case is finished. The other party’s attorneys can and will make the argument that, if you’re well enough to go to a party or leave your home, your injuries can’t be that severe.
Always avoid mentioning your case in any way on social media.
Above all, you need to take the most essential step of all after an electrocution accident: hiring an attorney.
The two most frustrating parts of any personal injury or wrongful death case are also two of the most important things to remember: the insurance company is in no way on your side, and often, neither is your employer/the employer of the deceased.
These companies will do everything within their power to avoid having to take responsibility for the pain their negligence has caused. Your insurance company will attempt to prove that you’re not entitled to coverage, often because they want to make it seem like your electrocution injury was your fault.
One of the absolute best things that you can do for yourself is to hire an attorney to represent either your own case or the case of a deceased family member.
First of all, the legal process, especially surrounding cases of this nature, is extremely complicated. Even if you think you can handle it on your own, you don’t want improper filing or a missed deadline to delay or destroy your case.
Plus, with all the emotional and physical stress you’re under, you’re simply not able to advocate for yourself as well as you’ll need to.
Working with a wrongful death/personal injury attorney means having access to someone who knows the ins and outs of the legal system, will ensure that you have all the proper paperwork, can collect and examine the evidence, and who can, most of all, help you to build a compelling case.
In some cases, you may be able to meet with representatives and come to a settlement without having to go to trial. (If possible, for many this is the preferred option, as it means at least you’ll walk away with something.)
However, whether you go to trial or settle out of court, having the right legal representation is absolutely invaluable.