According to the Jacksonville Sheriff’s Office, the incident occurred before noon on October 25 at the intersection of North Kernan Boulevard and Running River Road.
A man working for a subcontractor hired by the Jacksonville Transportation Authority (JTA) was installing traffic lights on the road using a boom truck when the vehicle struck a high power transmission line.
As the man attempted to exit the vehicle, he came into contact with metal parts that had a powerful electric current running through them and was electrocuted. A co-worker administered CPR until rescue workers arrived and took over. The victim was rushed to an area hospital with life-threatening injuries. His condition is critical.
Residents in the area reportedly heard an explosion and smelled something burning. More than 1,000 people in the area lost power as a result of the incident. It is not clear from initial reports how long the outage was.
Jacksonville police and the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) are investigating the incident.
JTA told news sources that the worker was an employee of James D. Hinson Electrical Contracting Company. The spokesperson for the agency released the following statement:
“JTA’s main concern is the health and well-being of the subcontractor who was seriously injured today while working on the Kernan Blvd. improvement project, part of JTA’s Mobility Works program. We are fully cooperating with authorities as they investigate the cause of the accident.”
The JTA Mobility Works project was started in June 2018 to widen Kernan Boulevard along a three-mile stretch. The project includes the expansion on traffic lanes and installation of new sidewalks and traffic lights. Four lanes on the boulevard are to be expanded to six between Matthew Ungar Drive and Atlantic Boulevard. Construction is expected to be completed in late 2020.
JEA—Jacksonville’s electric, water, and sewer utility—told the press that it had no record of a request from the subcontractor to turn off power to the transmission lines in the area while the traffic signals were being installed.
Electricity is one of the most common cause of injuries on construction sites. Construction workers who are electrocuted on the job are entitled to workers’ compensation. A successful claim can cover medical treatment and sometimes even a portion of lost income, regardless of whether the injured party was a direct employee, a contractor, or a subcontractor.
If a claim isn’t filed properly, an injured worker risks getting denied or receiving benefits that are significantly diminished. It is for this reason that workers should hire an experienced attorney to help them fight for a full compensation.
South Florida Workers’ Compensation Attorney
If you or your loved one was injured at a job site, you should hire an attorney. Contact us for a free initial consultation and work with one of South Florida’s most experienced workers’ compensation defense attorneys.