Suit Involving Electrocuted Landscaper Allowed To Move Forward
Colorado’s second-highest court is allowing a lawsuit filed by an injured landscaper to move forward. According to the lawsuit, the landscaper was injured by a faulty power line while trying to hang Christmas tree lights for a client. The defendant argued that it was immune to such lawsuits and made two arguments attempting to prove that claim.
According to the defendant, the High Voltage Safety Act requires that parties working near high-voltage power lines notify the utility company. In this case, the court reasoned that the duty of care belonged to the landscaper’s employer and not the landscaper himself. The other argument they made alleged that they were immune to lawsuits filed based on injuries caused by their electrical equipment. The courts ruled that they did not have the power to avoid lawsuits on that basis.
The court ruled that the plaintiff did not have a duty to inform the utility company because his employer had that duty. It is unclear if the employer informed the utility company that they would be working near powerlines. In terms of the second argument, the utility company argued that they were immune from lawsuits filed by any injured person. The court rejected this argument on the basis that the utility did not have the authority to avoid liability in this manner. The courts narrowed the scope of the immunity to customers only. The landscaper was not a customer of the utility company at the time he was injured.
Can I sue after an electrocution injury?
Yes. In many cases, it is the power company’s responsibility to ensure that their power lines are safe. Since it falls under their duty of care, you may be able to sue if you are electrocuted by a power line. You will have to establish negligence, however, and negligence is established by proving that the utility company either knew about the dangerous power line or would have known had they exercised an ordinary amount of care. Alternatively, you can prove that the utility company failed to hold up its end of the bargain when maintaining the power lines.
In the case mentioned above, the utility company informed the homeowner that her trees would be pruned as part of a regular maintenance schedule. They failed, however, to tell her when the maintenance would take place. The injured landscaper was working near the trees when he was electrocuted. He maintained that he was at least 10 feet from the power line at all times. The power line electrified a tree branch that he touched and caused electrical shock injuries. He fell from his ladder and suffered paralysis injuries as a result of the fall.
Talk to a Florida Electrocution and Shock Injury Attorney Today
Halpern, Santos & Pinkert represent the interests of those who are injured due to electrical shock accidents. If you have been electrocuted, we can help you recover damages related to your injuries. Call our Florida personal injury lawyers today to learn more.