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How to Avoid Dockside Injuries and Electric Shock Drowning

Electric Shock Drowning or “ESD” is a little known hazard of swimming around docks, particularly those in fresh water. These deaths and injuries are entirely preventable. They occur when swimmers encounter very small amounts of electricity leaking into the water, frequently from malfunctioning or defective electrical systems on docks. Even small amounts of electricity can interfere with our bodily nervous and muscle systems.

How do you know if you experienced a shock? The symptoms range from feeling a slight tingling sensation or loss of muscle control to cardiac arrest, internal organ damage to ultimately death.

To prevent injuries:

  • Never swim within 100 yards (300 feet) of any docks that have electricity service.
  • Never swim within 100 yards of any freshwater marina or boatyard
  • Make sure children understand that they must stay clear of any place that could have electricity
  • To retrieve a person in the water when electricity is suspected, reach, throw, row, but never go (into the water).
  • If a swimmer feels symptoms, he should NOT swim toward the dock, he should swim AWAY from the dock.

Do you have questions about dockside injuries or boating accidents? Have you experienced any of the above symptoms and need legal guidance about your next steps? You should contact Barrow Law Firm for answers.