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Author: admin, 27.06.2015
For 2003-2005, the death rate from electrocutions for the construction industry was 1.1 per 100,000 full-time workers. The causes of electrocutions in construction are different for electrical workers (electricians, electrical power installers and repairers, their apprentices and helpers doing electrical work, and their supervisors) and non-electrical workers.
For non-electrical workers, the main cause of electrocution was contact with overhead power lines, accounting for more than half of these deaths (chart 38c). Overall, contact with overhead power lines was the main cause of electrocutions from 2003-2005, causing a total of 177 deaths (49%), or about 60 per year.
The types of electrical injuries include electric shocks, electrical burns (from contact with electrical current), heat burns (from arc flashes), arc blast effects (hearing loss and physical injury), and falls (as a result of electric shocks). Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) show that electrocution was the fourth leading cause of death in construction in 2005, after falls to a lower level, transportation injuries, and being struck by objects and equipment.
The main cause of electrocution of electrical workers in 2003-2005 was contact with "live" (energized) equipment and wiring (chart 38b).


Only one-fifth of overhead power line electrocutions were due to direct contact of the worker's body with the live power line; the rest resulted when workers contacted objects or machinery – especially ladders, poles, and cranes – which were in direct contact with the power line.
Electrical workers overall had the greatest percentage of electrocutions, followed by construction laborers (chart 38d). Bureau of Labor Statistics, 2003-2005 Census of Fatal Occupational Injuries and the Current Population Survey.
They cut across all industrial sectors and all elements of NIOSH, constituting ~60% of all disease and injury mortality and ~70% of all occupational disease mortality.
The highest rates of death from electrocution were among electrical power installers and repairers and earth drillers (chart 38a).
In more than half of electrical worker electrocutions, the hazard resulted because of a failure to de-energize and lock out or tag out electrical circuits and equipment. Working too close to energized electrical equipment and wiring, failure to lock out or tag out machinery and appliances before working on them, lack of ground fault circuit interrupters, and contact with objects energized by power sources other than overhead power lines were also causes of electrocutions.


Heavy equipment operators (including operating engineers, crane and tower operators, excavating and loading machine operators, etc.) experienced a very small percentage of electrocutions from overhead power lines.
From 2003-2005, 362 deaths were caused by electric shock, compared with the other cause of electricity-related death, arc flashes or blasts, which resulted in 11 deaths.
Arc flashes occur when a large electric current flows outside its intended path (for example, during a short circuit), passes through the air, and heats the air to temperatures as high as 35,000 degrees Fahrenheit.



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