Electric Shock Injuries: Signs to Watch for and How to Respond

As Labor Day weekend approaches, Nevada residents and tourists will flock to summer hotspots like Lake Tahoe and Lake Mead to swim and boat. During the last few weeks of summer, families and friends should also be aware of an invisible killer lurking near boat marinas.

Electric shock drowning is a danger that many people don’t even know exists. Electrical equipment and appliances on boats and decks can leak voltage into the water and result in shocks or electrocutions. While electricity has revolutionized the way we live our lives, unless it is properly controlled, it can cause catastrophic injuries and even death.

Following are some signs to watch for and instructions on what to do if you or another person has been the victim of electric shock. Knowing how to respond properly to an electric shock can be the difference between life and death.

Signs of Electrical Shock

Electrical shock can be caused by a variety of sources including electric appliances, generators, outdoor lighting, and faulty wiring from boats and smaller watercrafts. You can save yourself from injuries by knowing what an electric shock looks like, as well as provide aid to someone suffering from a shock injury. Some of the warning signs that someone is experiencing an electric shock include:

  • Trouble breathing
  • Muscle spasms
  • Headache
  • Irregular heartbeat
  • Difficulty hearing and seeing
  • Sudden loss of consciousness
  • Seizures
  • Burns

Symptoms of severe electric shock can be extremely dangerous and have lasting effects on the human body. If you see these symptoms within yourself or someone you know, it’s important to respond immediately.

How to Respond to a Severe Electric Shock

The best thing to do when experiencing an electric shock is to get away from the source of electricity immediately. If you are able to, stop or shut off the power source. Contact emergency medical assistance once you are safe from the electrical source and let them know what happened. If you are at risk of losing consciousness, you should explain any symptoms you have to the medical responder so that they can walk you through immediate steps you can take to prevent further injury.

If someone else is experiencing an electric shock, it is important to know how to help them properly while avoiding getting shocked yourself, as electricity can flow from body to body. It is important to act quickly if someone is experiencing a severe electric shock.

  1. If they are still in contact with the electricity source, do not touch them
  2. Turn off the electricity if possible
  3. If this is not possible, move the source of electricity away from them using rubber or wood, provided they are not wet
  4. Do not move the shocked person unless they are in danger of further electric shocks
  5. Immediately call for medical assistance and tell them what happened
  6. Follow the instructions of the medical professionals
  7. Monitor the shocked person’s pulse and breathing

Our Personal Injury Lawyers Can Help with Electric Shock Injuries

Despite following these steps perfectly, you or the person you are helping may still sustain serious injuries. It is for this reason that manufacturing companies, building owners, property owners, and boat operators must ensure that power lines, electrical wiring, and appliances are manufactured and operated safely.

In the event your electric shock was caused by a defective component or the negligence of a property owner or boat operator, you may be entitled to a personal injury claim. For a free consultation with an experienced Henderson personal injury lawyer, call Dempsey, Roberts & Smith, Ltd. at (702) 388-1216. We are ready to help.