Regardless of where you work or what job duties you perform, you probably work near or with electricity every day. Electrical shock is so common and deadly the Occupational Safety and Health Administration considers it one of the fatal four risks to workers in the U.S.
While high-voltage electrical currents can be deadly almost immediately, you are not out of the woods when the shock stops. If you suffer an electricity-related injury at work, taking a few simple steps may save your life.
While it seems logical to let go of the electrical source after a shock, doing so may require some mental focus. After all, your muscles may firmly grip the source. Still, the longer you hold onto the electrical source, the greater your chances of suffering a serious injury or dying at work.
You may be in a mental fog after an electrical shock. Nevertheless, even if you believe your shock is minor, you should call 911. If you cannot reach a phone, ask one of your coworkers or a bystander to alert emergency responders.
An electrical shock may interfere with your body’s ability to experience pain. You may also have trouble moving. Consequently, provided you are no longer at risk of further electrical shock, you should stay put and wait for paramedics to arrive.
Recovering from an electrical shock at work can be both time-consuming and expensive. Ultimately, if you need time away from the job site to heal completely, you may be eligible for workers’ compensation benefits to help you pay medical bills and living expenses.