Electrical Injuries Caused by Lockout/Tagout and Power Line Accidents

The construction boom in New York City is providing ongoing employment for thousands of workers, including locals and workers from out-of-state or from other countries. However, the massive increase in fatalities at construction sites in recent years has brought the industry under scrutiny by city leaders. The shocking number of deaths include electrical injuries and power line accidents that leave workers severely burned, disabled, or fatally injured.

Construction companies and utilities are required to employ strict safety measures on construction sites. Unfortunately, in many cases, these companies may not put worker safety above the quest for profits. Unsafe, jury-rigged electrical systems for on-site elevators or unprotected electrical cables that provide power for various equipment can transfer high voltage electricity directly into a construction worker’s body, leading to instant death.

If you were injured in an electric accident on a New York construction site or lost a family member because of a negligent property owner, contact Wingate, Russotti, Shapiro, Moses & Halperin, LLP, to secure the legal aid of an experienced New York electrical accident attorney. We have a thorough understanding of New York safety codes and have utilized this knowledge to negotiate fair settlements for injured workers throughout New York. Do not let a negligent construction company or property owner avoid paying you the compensation you deserve after a catastrophic electrical injury. Call us at (212) 986-7353 to schedule a free consultation.

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Who Do We Represent?

All construction workers understand there is a certain amount of risk when working on a New York job site, but that does not mean they do not deserve fair and proper compensation after an accident. While workers should abide by all safety standards and requirements as outlined by OSHA guidelines, some injuries are unavoidable if a construction company or property owner acts negligently, either by avoiding to tell a worker about a damaged electrical cord or faulty generator.

As such, the attorneys at Wingate, Russotti, Shapiro, Moses & Halperin, LLP, provide legal representation to construction workers who have suffered serious electrical injuries, including:

In addition to construction workers themselves, we also provide legal services to the family members of construction workers who died due to electrocution. If your loved one was killed due to an electrical accident on a construction site, you may be eligible for a wrongful death claim to recover compensation for your loss and manage the new financial burdens you are facing.

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Common Electrical Accidents at New York Construction Sites

Faulty wiring, damaged equipment, and poor work conditions can expose workers to a variety of electrical accidents. The majority of the time these accidents are directly related to the power source, such as shocks and electrocutions when touching an exposed wire. However, workers can also be injured by equipment failures brought on by faulty electrical components.

Electrical accidents at New York job sites can include:

  • Shocks from exposed wires
  • Sparks from faulty equipment
  • Arc flashes
  • Equipment failure, such as defective generators or transformers
  • Electrocution caused by lockout/tagout failures
  • Failure to install ground fault protection or circuit breakers
  • A lack of safety signs that identify electrical hazards
  • Falls as a result of being shocked, especially if the worker is on an elevated surface like scaffolding

Any single one of these actions can contribute to a serious or fatal injury, especially if the construction company overseeing the site failed to provide proper training, maintain all equipment, supervise employees, or did not inform workers of the risks.

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Construction Sites and Electrocution Injuries

Workers that survive contact with electric power supplies or power lines are often left with permanent disabilities. Common types of injuries sustained in these avoidable accidents include:

  • Disfiguring burns
  • Cardiac arrest
  • Loss of muscular control
  • Respiratory arrest
  • Nerve damage

Those that survive may suffer permanent damage due to catastrophic injuries. They may no longer be able to work or function in any capacity and may require long-term hospitalization, surgeries, and other treatment.

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New York City Safety Laws and Rampant Violations

Safety regulation violations on construction sites are rampant in New York City. Although the area has some of the nation’s most stringent construction safety regulations, with 25 new laws enacted since 2008 in an effort to increase safety on construction sites, the number of fatalities continues to rise at an alarming rate, including electrical and power line injuries and deaths. If a site has a safety violation regarding the power supplies, construction workers may inadvertently make contact with the energy source, resulting in a serious injury. These cables often provide power to electrical cranes, welders, pumps, elevators, and hoists, and if not properly installed, can leave a worker dead, or permanently disabled from a high voltage shock.

In addition, two-thirds of recent OSHA construction inspections resulted in citations for serious safety violations, according to the New York Times. Even so, the same construction companies continue to be involved in projects throughout the New York City area. Lockout/tagout failures are often the underlying cause of serious injuries. Equipment that is being maintained may not have been disconnected from the power source or released hazardous stored energy. Tagout warning devices are required to protect those who are servicing equipment but are easier to remove and provide less protection than lockout devices. In either case, a violation can leave a worker permanently or fatally injured.

The penalties imposed on these companies are minimal and have not proved to deter companies that consistently put workers in harm’s way. These companies must be held accountable. That’s when the New York construction accident attorneys at Wingate, Russotti, Shapiro, Moses & Halperin, LLP, get involved. Were you or your family member seriously injured or killed in an electrical injury while working construction? Our goal is to help you pursue full justice.

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Who Is Responsible for Your Injuries?

Generally, injuries sustained on a job site are covered under workers’ compensation, so long as you were performing your normal duties. However, electrical injuries can be devastating, leading to extensive medical bills, lost wages, and paralysis. The insurance company who covers the job site may be unwilling to offer proper compensation or deny your claim altogether, even if the construction company violated safety standards. If your claim is denied and you believe you have grounds for an appeal, contact a New York electrician workers’ compensation attorney to review your case and discuss what options are available to you.

In some cases, you may be eligible for a personal injury claim instead of workers’ compensation. Workers’ compensation benefits bar workers from filing personal injury claims against their employers, but you may have a claim against a negligent property owner or contractor who is not a part of your company. This can include contractors who knowingly used damaged equipment, property owners who were aware of faulty electrical systems, and third-party workers who contributed to an unsafe work environment, such as leaving an exposed wire near water. To determine what type of claim you are eligible for, you should contact an experienced attorney who can review all avenues of compensation on your behalf.

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Lawyers Providing Legal Help to Electrical Accident Injury Victims in New York

At Wingate, Russotti, Shapiro, Moses & Halperin, LLP, our mission is to help the injured pursue justice and full compensation. Our litigation team is exceptional in their dedication and ability to craft a powerful, well-documented case against a construction company that has violated safety standards. We take on a limited number of cases, and you can be confident that your New York electrical injury case will be given the full focus of your NY personal injury attorney.

Call our firm and get immediate assistance if you or a loved one has been seriously injured by contact with power lines, lockout/tagout violations or other electrical injuries. We can be reached at (212) 986-7353.

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Additional Information