With the recent increase of construction accidents and deaths in New York, more attention is being given to the failings that seem to be a factor in these incidents. One of the biggest causes has been discovered to be electrocution. In fact, The Center for Construction Research and Training states that almost 10 percent of the fatalities across the industry from 2008 to 2010 were due to electrocution.

When researchers considered the total number of worker deaths that occurred due to electrocution, almost half of them involved construction workers. While fatal accidents can occur from equipment and electrical circuits that are energized, studies revealed that the biggest cause of these deaths is contact with live wires. This situation is generally only encountered with electrical construction workers rather than non-electrical workers.

Even employees who do not work with electricity were found to be victims. Around 20 percent of workers were killed after coming in direct contact with lighting equipment or live wires. Almost 60 percent of fatalities occurred when workers came in contact with overhead powerlines. According to reports, more construction workers were killed due to this than electrical workers.

Industrial Safety and Hygiene News found that there were other causes that led to construction worker electrocutions. These included working with damaged or improperly installed equipment and coming in contact with an energized powerline with conductive equipment. Another fact noted was that the majority of the accidents that were analyzed involved an alternating current. Over 66 percent of cases have distribution voltages and half had voltages of over 600 volts.

Timothy F. Schweitzer
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Personal injury lawyer specializing in maritime, construction and railroad injury claims.