It’s not our fault. That is the sentiment of the people in charge of the lake where three Boy Scouts were electrocuted to death on August 5th, 2017. Two older Eagle Scouts were teaching a younger boy how to sail when their mast struck a power line 30 feet above the lake. Two of the boys were dead by the time a rescue team arrived, and the third perished soon after.
It boggles the mind to think that a power line would be strung low enough over a lake that a boat mast could hit it. But that is exactly what happened. And this is not the first time. Thirty-six years ago a man was killed on the same lake when his mast hit a power line. The Army Corps of Engineers raised that power line, but only in the spot where the accident occurred. Had they done so all over the lake, those three boys would still be alive.
Power lines are not only dangerous over lakes. Semis occasionally hit them when clearance is shorter than expected. In residential and business areas, electricians, contractors, and construction workers are electrocuted and killed when coming into contact with them. Tree trimmers and other landscapers are also at risk.
Power lines that are unsafely low are a significant risk, and dismissing this risk as avoidable is irresponsible. Experts at the power company or engineers with the Army Corps of Engineers are much more qualified to evaluate the risk profile of low-slung power lines than is a person trimming trees.
If you or someone you love has been injured in an electrocution accident, determining whether or not proper safety decisions were made by power companies, contractors, and other people in charge is important. Please, retain an experienced attorney who can help you ask the important questions.