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Scaffolder survives massive shock

A man received a massive electric shock last week, in Auckland New Zealand after a steel scaffold pole he was holding contacted low hanging overhead power lines.

Scaffolder Jahden Nelson,28, was working for Supercity Scaffolding on April 19th ,removing scaffolding on a jobsite in west Auckland, when he touched the power lines and received a massive electric shock. He is extremely lucky to be alive, having suffered a heart attack and burns to around 30 percent of his body. As a result, he has had both arms amputated and now faces months in hospital and years of surgery and rehabilitation.

WorkSafe said: “WorkSafe is investigating an incident involving a worker who suffered significant injury after contact with power lines while dismantling scaffolding.”
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The low overhead power lines

The site was given the go ahead to work near the power lines receiving a ‘close approach consent’ before work began. These are issued in accordance with electricity safety standards to construction companies to provide minimum distances and safe work practices for working near power lines.

A spokesman said: “This is a standard process in the construction industry and is required for anyone working next to power lines. It identifies the minimum approach distance from lines – this is the calculated safe working distance that provides worker protection when working near power lines. The consent highlights the risks of working close to the lines and enables the company to work within defined areas. Once it has been issued, it is up to the company to manage within those parameters, maintaining safe distances from the power lines.”