A low voltage electric shock may result in fatal injuries because it can send an electrical current through vital organs and tissues with low resistance.
Beware of Low Voltage Electric Shock
Most people associate injury and/or death from electrical shock with high voltage such as power lines, faulty wiring, and faulty electrical equipment. What they don’t realize is that low voltage electric shock can be just as dangerous causing both external and internal injuries, even though there is no sign of visible damage.
A low voltage electrical shock is typically caused by electric current of 500 volts or less. This voltage is usually associated with household equipment such as kitchen appliances, washers and dryers, light fixtures, and computer equipment. In the average household environment, the voltage ranges from 110 to 220 volts, so people don’t worry too much about electrical shock. However, research shows that a person can be electrocuted by coming into contact with only 100-200 volts. In some cases, personal injury lawyers are aware of severe injuries and deaths from as little as 42 volts of electricity.
Medical studies show that electrical injuries from low voltage shock often results in the same amount of damage as high-voltage injuries based on the:
- Amperage of the electrical current
- Length of time the victim is in contact with the electrical source
- Pathway of electric current through the body
- Type of electric current involved (AC or DC)
- Victim’s existing health and/or medical conditions
- Time that elapses to get medical attention
Although low voltage electric shock often leaves no visible signs of injuries, there is a risk of damage to internal organs and tissues. Injury symptoms may include numbness and tingling; vision, hearing, or speech problems; breathing difficulty; chest pains; mental confusion; and abdominal pain. A personal injury lawyer often sees victims with flash burns at the site of contact, as well as other injuries mentioned above. In more severe cases, victims often exhibit loss of consciousness, paralysis, and seizures.
Low voltage electric shock often travels through tissues with low resistance such as blood vessels, internal organs, the central nervous system, the heart, and the brain which makes it extremely dangerous. People with related underlying conditions, especially heart disease, can experience heart damage, cardiac arrest, or fatal arrhythmia. If electric current travels to the brain, a person can experience depression, anxiety, personality changes, and permanent seizure disorders.