According to The Washington Post (10/24/14), Hugo Hernandez Palomino came into contact with a transformer that was supposed to have been shut off but was actually left on. As Palomino was in the process of constructing scaffolding, he was reportedly hit by an electric arc, which caused him to fall from the scaffolding and break his neck. He also suffered severe burns.
Palomino, who was in his mid- to late-20s at the time of the accident, now has 24-hour medical care and requires machines to perform functions that his organs can no longer perform. According to court documents, he lives in a long-term high- intensity care facility and has been in and out of critical condition since the accident. He also underwent multiple medical procedures, including skin grafts. Palomino’s lawsuit alleged that Pepco was negligent in not turning off the electrical voltage and not providing adequate supervision.
Among the machines he requires is a respirator because his lungs are too weak to empty and fill on their own.
READ MORE BACK AND NECK INJURY LEGAL NEWS
Pepco had previously accepted liability in the incident. According to reports, Palomino was not a qualified electrical technician and was not experienced in working near such high-voltage electrical units.
The lawsuit was Palomino v. Potomac Electrical Power Company, case number 379804-V, in the Circuit Court for Montgomery County, Maryland, filed August 2, 2013.
Lawsuits have been filed against various employers alleging workers were injured on job sites and suffered debilitating back and neck injuries, sometimes resulting in permanent paralysis.