Who is Liable for Electrical Accidents on Construction Sites?

Lever & Ecker, PLLC May 31, 2013 Construction Accidents

In 2011 OSHA listed electrocutions as one of their “fatal four”, top causes of deaths on construction sites, killing 67 that year. Electricity is a critical component of a job site, but is it worth risking an injury or your life over? Construction managers are ultimately responsible for proper training and use of equipment, and making sure the environment is safe.

Environmental factors that can cause an injury when working with electricity include:

Explosive environments
Surrounding flammable vapors, liquids or gasses
Combustible dusts
Wet area
Improper storage of flammable items

The construction manager is also responsible for overseeing the site and that employees are complying with OSHA guidelines. They have strict rules that were put into place for workers’ protection. Rules to follow for electrical safety are:

Wear safety glasses
Never switch electricity on before a job has been completed
Systems and equipment need to be grounded
Flexible cords must have strain relief
Damaged cords must be replaced
Grounding prongs must be present on extension cords
Equipment must be checked and maintained regularly and taken out of service if found defective
Multiple plug adaptors are not allowed

A considerable problem on construction sites involves overhead electrical lines. A report from the National Safety Council revealed that between 1992 and 2005 over 150 construction workers suffered electrocution when a metal ladder touched live overhead power lines. All of these live wires need identification on a job site by the construction worker manager. Ladders, scaffolds and any other materials should never come within 10 feet of them.

If you have suffered an injury because of an electrical accident on a job site, contact an experienced NY personal injury attorney and we’ll help you receive compensation.