Burn and shock injuries from working on high-voltage wiring is a fairly common phenomenon in New Hampshire and other states. When a worker suffers an injury of that nature, or any other work-related injury, any disability that is caused by the accident is compensable through workers' compensation benefits. Workers' compensation is the employee's first source for collecting compensation and for health care expenses incurred in his or her treatment and rehabilitation.
A recent accident in another state resulted in three men being injured while working at an electricity generating power plant. They were doing work on high-voltage wires, but the specific details have not been reported. It is known that a fire broke out and that the three men were transported by the fire department to hospitals.
The employer of the injured workers is a company that purchases and rehabilitates low impact hydropower plants. The workers were at a power plant when the accident occurred. Each worker is entitled to full health care services, including hospitalization, medications, doctor bills and rehab therapies where appropriate and necessary.
The workers' compensation insurance carrier also pays each worker a statutorily scheduled amount for lost wages and other covered benefits. In return for guaranteed compensation and health care expenses, the worker relinquishes the right to sue the employer for negligence in causing the injuries. Workers are allowed to sue third parties, however, when the work-related accident was caused by the third party's independent negligence.
Workers' compensation laws and regulations follow the same general pattern in New Hampshire and all states. There are, however, differences from state to state, and each state's laws and regulations must be consulted for the details of coverage. In this accident, each of the men will be placed on workers' compensation by the employer. In most accidents, however, there may not necessarily be an immediate hospitalization that occurs. In those instances, the worker must take steps to make sure that the employer processes the necessary workers' compensation papers in order to start a claim.
Source: masslive.com, "OSHA begins inspection of Ware River Power after high-voltage accident causing three worker injuries", Jim Russell, April 19, 2016