If you have ever experienced an electrical shock, you know how frightening the incident can be. In some cases, electric shocks result in severe injuries, including burns. Electrical burns have the potential to cause internal tissue damage from the flow of an electric current though the body and require immediate medical attention.
Children, in particular, generally lack knowledge of electricity and its potential for harm. As a result, children may inadvertently or deliberately come into contact with an electrical component and suffer a burn or other injury.
If your child has sustained an electrical burn due to someone negligence or a defective product, you may be entitled to compensation from those responsible. Contact child electrical-burn attorney Jeffrey Killino at 877-875-2927 for information regarding your legal options.
Common Causes of Electrical Burns in Children
Children are curious by nature and tend to explore items that are potentially dangerous. Young children may play with or suck on electrical cords without understanding the dangers of doing so. If left unattended, children may insert metal items into power outlets and sustain severe injuries.
Children have also sustained electric-burn injuries through the use of toys that require plugging in to an electrical outlet. To reduce the incidence of children’s electric-burn and electric-shock injuries, the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) urges parents not to give children toys that must be plugged into electrical outlets. Though toys with batteries present their own risks and dangers, battery-operated toys, in general, are safer, according to the AAP, than those operated by outlet electricity.
Symptoms of Electrical Burns
Adults are often not present at the moment a child sustains an electrical-burn injury. Symptoms that may indicate the presence of an electrical burn wound include the following:
- Tenderness, blistering, bleeding, swelling, or redness in a concentrated area
- Complaints of headache
- Trouble breathing
If your child was left unattended in the vicinity of an electrical source and suffers from the symptoms listed above, you are well-advised to seek immediate medical attention.
Legal Liability for Children’s Electric-burn Injuries
An electric-burn injury may be caused by someone’s negligence, by a defective product, or both. If your child has suffered an electric-burn injury as a result of negligence or a product defect, you may be able to recover damages for the injuries suffered by your child in a product-liability action, a negligence action, or both.
Product-liability Actions for Electric-burn Injuries Resulting from Defective Products
A child’s electric-burn injury may be caused by any one of many electrical appliances or products. If a defect in such a product was a cause of a child’s electric-burn injury, the manufacturer of the product and anyone in the chain of the product’s distribution may be found liable for damages suffered as a result of the injury in a product-liability action.
Such defects might occur in electrical cords or outlets, appliances that must be plugged into electric outlets, and toys that require plugging in to operate. The defect may exist in the manufacturing or design of the product or in the manufacturer’s or seller’s failure to warn of its dangers with respect to electric-burn injuries or to include adequate instructions regarding the product’s safe use both by adults and around children.
Negligent Repair or Maintenance
If the negligent repair or maintenance of a product is found to have been a cause of a child’s electric-burn injury, the individuals or entities responsible for such repair or maintenance may be found liable for the child’s injuries in an action for negligence. Such liability may arise in a home setting when an adult has hired someone to repair an electrical cord, outlet, or appliance, and the negligent repair results in an electric-burn injury to a child who comes into contact with the electrical source.
A child may also sustain an electric-burn injury as a result of the negligent supervision of an adult. When an adult or entity—such as a babysitter, daycare center, or school—accepts the responsibility of caring for and supervising a child, a duty arises on the part of the supervisor to watch over and otherwise care for the child with the degree of ordinary care that a prudent person would exercise in the same or similar circumstances.
When a child gains access to an electrical source and sustains an electric-burn injury as a result of a supervisor’s inattentiveness, the supervisor may be held liable for the injuries suffered by the child in an action for negligence. A supervisor may also be held liable in an action for negligence if the supervisor was present and attentive when a child sustained an electric-burn injury but failed to prevent access by the child to electric sources or products known or reasonably knowable to the supervisor to pose electric-burn injuries.
If your child has sustained an electrical-burn injury due to someone’s negligence or a defective product, call child-injury lawyer Jeffrey Killino at 877-875-2927 for experienced and compassionate assistance with your case.