Austin, TX (Law Firm Newswire) January 24, 2013 – This gruesome case points out the duty of care a utility company has to maintain its power lines.
“This case is brutally gruesome, and it devastated the children of the deceased, who watched their 39-year-old mother burn to death underneath a 7,200 volt power line. It was a scene that caused nightmares for the rescuers, neighbours and the woman’s mother-in-law, who tried to rescue her,” explained Brooks Schuelke, an Austin personal injury lawyer with Perlmutter & Schuelke, L.L.P.
This fatal accident happened in 2009, outside the home of the deceased’s mother-in-law. The family, including two young children, ages 2 and 4, were inside the home when the power went out. The woman’s daughter-in-law went outside to use her cell phone to call the power company. When she did not come back into the home, the mother-in-law went outside to find out what was going on. As she stepped out on the porch, she saw her daughter-in-law being burned alive, trapped under a power pole.
“Her first instinct was to help, but when she stepped onto the grass, she was thrown backwards by the force of the electricity, burning her hands. She was not able to pull the younger woman away from the lines. Her two children, also outside by this time, were screaming. Due to the live electrical current, there was nothing that could be done to help the pinned woman, until help arrived,” Schuelke stated.
When rescue crews did arrive and turn the power off, they rushed the woman to the hospital. However, her injuries were so severe, she died three days later. The wrongful death lawsuit, filed by the deceased’s mother-in-law, alleges the power line failed because the power company did not clean the line connections properly before installing them in 2004.
Does this case have a chance of winning? “It may,” indicated Austin injury lawyer Schuelke, “depending on the technical evidence relating to the line connections being set up in 2004. This case is bound to take some time to hear, as it will likely involve some fairly technical concepts. At the end of the day though, there are two young kids without a mother, because a power line got loose and fell on her. Things like that do not happen randomly, for no reason,” Schuelke pointed out. “If you have faced the wrongful death of a loved one, and do not know where to turn, call me. I can help you understand what happens next, and what to expect at trial,” he said.
Perlmutter & Schuelke, LLP
1717 W. 6th Street, Suite 375
Austin, Texas 78703-4868
Call (512) 476-4944