Worker Electrocution Due to Contact with High Voltage Power Lines

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Worker Electrocution Due to Contact with High Voltage Power Lines

A 61-year-old construction worker died from electrocution this past June.

The worker had been driving a dump truck to remove debris from a site in Lexington, KY. He raised the bed of the truck, and it struck the power lines above. The truck caught on fire. As the worker attempted to get out of the truck, he was electrocuted. Another person received an electrical shock while trying to help him.

OSHA was called to investigate the accident.

Safety Near Power Lines

Sometimes accidents happen even to those who have the most experience in an industry. Life-saving lessons can be learned from the circumstances of this and other accidents.

Please view (or review) the safety video below that shows what to do and NOT to do when contact is made with power lines. Puget Sound Energy developed the video several years ago. It’s also posted on YouTube.

Don’t allow yourself or co-workers to become complacent. Go through the training your company provides with an open mind to learn something new, no matter how many times you’ve heard it before.

More Resources

The Electrical Safety Foundation International (ESFI) publishes electrical injury information in graph-form on their website. This information comes from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics’ (BLS) Census of Fatal Occupational Injuries (CFOI) and Survey of Occupational Injuries & Illnesses (SOII). This link takes you to the page that covers information from 2003-2016.

The ESFI website contains some training resources on overhead power line safety. Take a look at them here.

IAS actively supports IEEE SIGHT (Special Interest Group in Humanitarian Technology). This group networks IEEE members worldwide to work with under-served communities. One way is to bring electrical safety awareness to the people in those communities. Here is a link to a YouTube video directed by an IEEE senior member. The video explains hazards of electricity in India and ways to mitigate the hazards. Be aware that the video does contain some graphic photos.

Look up!

With the holidays coming up, many people like to decorate outdoors. Remember to look up! Take stock of your surroundings before hanging those lights.

Hugh Hoagland

does research and testing of PPE exposed to electrical arcs and is an arc flash expert. Hugh is a Sr. Consultant at ArcWear and Sr. Partner at e-Hazard. Read more about Hugh.

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