Hablamos Español

What is an Electric Company’s Duty to Keep People From Being Electrocuted By Power Lines?

When someone is working on a job, and is injured by another business or person, or the actions of another business or person, does that business or person owe the injured person a duty of care? In order to fully explain this, let’s look at a case recently decided by the Indiana Court of Appeals.

The Case: IPL v. Gammon

Joshua Gammon worked for a window and roofing company, and worked on and around roofs, which can be near power lines. While on a roof, Gammon was installing some metal trim near some uninsulated power lines owned by the Indianapolis Power and Lighting Company (IPL). Gammon was electrocuted while on the roof, and later filed suit against IPL.

IPL argued pre-trial that they did not owe Gammon a duty of reasonable care and filed a summary judgement motion. However, both IPL and Gammon noted that electric companies do owe a duty to exercise care such that a person of reasonable prudence would use under similar circumstances. Gammon stated that the above holding should apply to this case as well, but one sentence after that statement in the case Rogers v. Grunden, there is a statement that says the duty of care owed when a company is distributing electricity is that they keep electric lines insulated in places where the general public may come into contact with them.

The court here noted that the exception noted above has been applied in other cases as well. In the case Spudich v. N. Ind. Public Service Company, the court stated that power lines do not need to be insulated if they are sufficiently isolated and there would be no reasonable likelihood of the general public coming into contact with those lines. In Spudich, the court stated that because the plaintiff came into contact with the uninsulated power lines while he was working that the duty to keep those lines insulated did not apply. The lines he was working on were sufficiently isolated that the general public would not come into contact with them.

Finally, Gammon argued that his injury was foreseeable, because of the danger of the power lines. However, the court here held that because Gammon often worked on and around power lines, he knew of the danger and the injury he suffered was not foreseeable.

What Does This Mean?

This case details when utility companies owe both the general public and those people who work on power or sewer lines a duty of reasonable care. This essentially details that if you are someone who works with power lines or on sewer lines, you are supposed to know the danger that accompanies that. It is always important to be careful when dealing with these things. But if you are part of the general public, these companies do owe you a duty of care.

Have You Been Injured in an Accident Recently?

Contact the attorneys at Hurst Limontes, LLC. We have decades of combined experience working with our personal injury clients, and we will fight for you to ensure you receive just compensation for your injuries! Contact our office today for a free consultation, and visit our website to learn more.

Contact Us For a Free Consultation Fill out the form below to receive a free and confidential initial consultation.

    FAQs
    Our Fees

    It cost $0 up front to hire our office. We work on a contingency fee basis, which means you only pay us if we settle your case or obtain a verdict on your behalf.

    If we’re unable to obtain a settlement of verdict for you we eat the costs we’ve advanced to litigate your case, which includes costs for ordering medical records, filing your case, hiring experts, deposing witnesses, and many other things.

    If we do settle your case or obtain a verdict for you our standard rate is 33% of the settlement or verdict, plus reimbursement for the expense we’ve previously advanced. Our fee never increases like some personal injury attorneys, even if we have to take your case to trial.

    Our Fees

    It cost $0 up front to hire our office. We work on a contingency fee basis, which means you only pay us if we settle your case or obtain a verdict on your behalf.

    If we’re unable to obtain a settlement of verdict for you we eat the costs we’ve advanced to litigate your case, which includes costs for ordering medical records, filing your case, hiring experts, deposing witnesses, and many other things.

    If we do settle your case or obtain a verdict for you our standard rate is 33% of the settlement or verdict, plus reimbursement for the expense we’ve previously advanced. Our fee never increases like some personal injury attorneys, even if we have to take your case to trial.

    Case Worth

    As a victim, establishing damages, negotiating with the insurance company, or filing a lawsuit can be daunting and next to impossible without the assistance of an experienced lawyer. As a result, if you have been hurt in an accident, it is important that you contact an attorney as soon as possible to help you recover the compensation to which you are entitled under Indiana law.

    Why Hire?

    Choosing an attorney that has experience dealing with personal injury law is important to protect your legal rights. If you are trying to recover damages from a business or other type of organization, you can bet that they are going to have a legal team on their side.

    Medical Bills

    If you were injured by an accident you may be struggling to determine who is responsible for paying your medical bills and holding them accountable. Speak to an experienced personal injury lawyer at The Law Office of Hurst Limontes LLC and learn if we may be able to help.

    Recovery

    After you have been injured, you are entitled to compensation. The type and amount of compensation depends on the injury, bills, the cause of the injury, negligence/bad faith of the defendant, etc. The attorney you retain can also heavy influence your recovery through knowledge, experience, and dedication. Legal terms and phrases can be confusing even after you retain an attorney. If you have been injured, you may wonder how much your case is worth or what your “damages” are. The worse the injuries, the higher the value of the case and the greater need for an experienced attorney