An electric shock occurs when a current from an electrical system passes in and out of the body. The Occupational Safety and Health Administration lists electricity as a source of danger to people in the workplace, specifically for professionals who work with electrical systems, such as engineers. Although people in some professions are more at risk for electric shocks than others, electricity can harm everyone who works around it.
Workers in Louisiana should be aware of these three things that electrocution can do to the body.
1. Cause minor to severe burns
Electricity can cause burns in and around the location where the current made contact with the skin. For minor burns, experts recommend treating the area with a cloth moistened with cool water. Medical professionals should examine any burns that are more severe.
2. Contribute to nerve injury
Nerves are sensitive to electrical currents, and the current may cause damage to the nerve tissue. Some typical symptoms of nerve damage include tingling sensations, feelings of weakness and sharp pains in the affected areas.
3. Lead to an abnormal heart rhythm
The heart has a particular rhythm that an electric shock can impede. Arrhythmia is dangerous because it can lead to cardiac arrest, a potentially fatal condition. A fluttering sensation in the chest is a common symptom of an abnormal heart rhythm, as well as dizziness and fainting.
By being aware of what an electric shock can do to the body, employees have more reason to practice safety around electricity in the workplace.