Danger at this time of year

Tuesday 08 December 3:39 PM

As we get ready for the Christmas season it is important to remember we are usually surrounded by additional electricity and electrical devices. Yes I am talking about Christmas lights . One of the dangers is overloading your electricity boards, or worse using faulty electrical boards when setting up at this time of year.

When people come into unprotected contact with electricity, it can send a jolt or current of electricity shooting through the body. This is an electric shock, and it has the power to cause changes in one’s vision, muscular contractions, and burns. It may even cause one’s heart to beat irregularly. In the worse cases, it may cause death by electrocution.

Treatment for any type of electric shock is important to prevent serious damage or death by electrocution. First aid, however, is still important to stabilize and/or make the victim comfortable until they can be seen by an emergency specialist.

What to do.

When someone comes into contact with an electrical current and receives an electric shock, your goal is to first prevent electrocution.
 
First aid will start with ensuring that the flow of electricity is shut off, as this can further injure the victim as well as anyone attempting to administer aid. To ensure that the current is turned off, shut off the circuit breakers or remove the fuse from the fuse box. If it is indeed the christmas tree lights, unplug them from the outlet. It is important that you never assume that the electricity is shut off simply because an appliance does not have power. Then call 000 as soon as possible, or if you are alone, you should call emergency services as soon as the individual is no longer near the electrical current.
 
Check the individual for signs of burns and to ensure that the person has a pulse and is breathing. If the individual does not appear to be breathing, you’ll need to start CPR right away.

If the casualty has been burned as a result of the electrical shock, remove any clothing that is touching or near the burn and rinse the area with cool water. Burns should then be covered with a clean cloth, or you may apply a sterile gauze loosely over the burned skin. Because of shock the casualty victim may have fallen, use caution in regard to moving the individual, as there may be a head injury from the fall.
 
There’s no time like the present when it comes to learning the skills that will allow you to confidently perform first aid if unexpected emergencies arise. Electrical shock can have long-term or even deadly consequences if it ultimately results in electrocution. 
 

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