Hiden, Rott & Oertle, LLP


Some people are adamant about completing a home improvement job by themselves and saving the money that would be spent on a professional. However, there are some jobs that are dangerous enough that even adamant do-it-your-selfers should seek professional help to complete. Many of these tasks involve working with electricity, due to the risks associated with it. Unfortunately, an industrial accident in California has further demonstrated the dangers of working with electricity. 

Around noon in late September, authorities received reports of a fire that had started underground in an electrical vault. At this point, it is unclear if an explosion or a surge of electricity started the fire. There were five workers from Cam Construction Inc, a contractor hired by Southern California Edison, on the scene at the time of the incident.

Unfortunately, one of the contractors became trapped in the vault. Once firefighters were able to put out the fire and determine that electricity to the vault had been cut, they were able to collect the body. The incident caused a loss of power for homes in the area.

The family of the deceased man likely has many questions they would like answered as a result of the accident. Investigators are on the scene to determine the cause of the fire and how to prevent similar future incidents. However, in addition to dealing with their grief, the family likely has practical concerns regarding how they will afford funeral expenses and cope with the loss of the man's income. Most states, such as California, require employers to provide their workers with workers' compensation coverage to aid in the event of a death or injury resulting from an industrial accident - the deceased man's dependents may qualify for these benefits on his behalf. Because securing compensation is sometimes a lengthy and confusing process, some people eligible for the benefits have found it helpful to secure additional assistance knowledgeable in the process.

Source: Los Angeles Daily News, Huntington Beach: Edison contractor killed in possible electrical vault explosion, No author, Oct. 1, 2013

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