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#147864 - 03/18/03 09:59 PM This Accident Sounds Very Serious
Joe Tedesco Offline

Registered: 10/07/00
Posts: 3325
Loc: Boston, Massachusetts USA
Hi, my name is Sandra Brasmeister and I got a low voltage electrical shock/burn form a paper shredder.

The shredder stopped working after working with it for about 15 minutes, since if we used it more that 20 minutes it would overheat and shut off anyway and smell.

I reversed the paper with the reverse button checked for staples or a paper clip as to why the machine failed.

When I got up to do this I spilled my coffee product which I had to clean up. I think my right hand was still damp on the back. When I went to hit the button again I got a heck of a shock, causing me to not be able to let go. I then blacked out. When I came to, people around me were taking my blood pressure which was 200/100 and my pulse was 200 bpm.

They were calling 911 and taking me to the hospital. I was having premature heart beats. But no one really looked at my right hand. If they did there was little to see.

Someone covered it and later, my hand turned black, pealed the pain was unbearable and even today I still have problems with nerve damage.

Doctor have dx me with RSD, which is a problem arising from the trama of the electrical shock.

Do you know of anyone having similar problems, and can a low voltage electrical shock really cause this sort of disabiling damage to the human body?

You being an electrician, have you ever heard of this sort of thing happening?

Thanks for your help.

Please help, this is turning into a disability.
Joe Tedesco, NEC Consultant

Arc Flash PPE Clothing, LOTO & Insulated Tools
#147865 - 03/18/03 10:24 PM Re: This Accident Sounds Very Serious
Trumpy Offline


Registered: 07/05/02
Posts: 8532
Loc: SI,New Zealand
I think that Sandra has suffered from the effects of the Electric Current flowing through her body.
I have no idea what RSD is, but, with any serious electric shock, the heart and lungs are normally the hardest hit.
The heart is controlled by small electrical impulses, having a large(in comparison) current flowing through it, can cause havoc,however
these effects will eventually subside.
This makes a pretty good case for supplying this type of Equipment through a cord-line GFCI.
Hope Sandra, is feeling better now, Man, you shouldn't expect that happening to you at work!.

[This message has been edited by Trumpy (edited 03-19-2003).]
Let's face it, these days if you're not young, you're old - Red Green grin

#147866 - 03/19/03 08:01 AM Re: This Accident Sounds Very Serious
SvenNYC Offline

Registered: 08/19/02
Posts: 1685
Loc: New York City
She said it was a low-voltage electric shredder....does she mean that low voltage to be the 110 volts at the outlet (as opposed to hundres or thousands of volts at a main panel) or was it one of those that run off a wall-wart?

If I recall, a single AA-size battery can pump out enough current to kill you if your body's resistance is low enough...

#147867 - 03/19/03 09:14 AM Re: This Accident Sounds Very Serious
C-H Offline


Registered: 09/17/02
Posts: 1508
Loc: Stockholm, Sweden
Trumpy is right.


If I recall, a single AA-size battery can pump out enough current to kill you if your body's resistance is low enough...

Only if applied at the right place. If you want to kill someone with a 1.5V battery, you will need to insert the electrodes directly at the heart.

Surely, the 'low voltage' in this case has to refer to the 120V? The burns from mains voltage can be very severe, but as burns usually don't kill, less attention is paid to them than the effects on the heart and lungs which are often fatal. Electrial accidents reports are scary reading and we've seen the pictures Joe posted.

#147868 - 03/19/03 03:18 PM Re: This Accident Sounds Very Serious
WebSparky Offline

Registered: 02/21/03
Posts: 144
Loc: Cleveland, Ohio

#147869 - 03/20/03 03:10 PM Re: This Accident Sounds Very Serious
BuggabooBren Offline

Registered: 11/15/01
Posts: 336
Loc: NM
RSD is Reflex Sympathetic Dystrophy Syndrome, also known as CRPS, is a progressive disease of the Autonomic Nervous System that can follow a simple trauma (fall or sprain) a break or fracture (especially wrist and ankle) a sharp force injury (such as a knife or bullet wound), heart problems, infections, surgery, RSI/CTS, spinal injuries/disorders, or major trauma.

It is a multi-symptom condition affecting one, two, or sometimes even all four of the extremities. It can also be in the face, shoulders, back, eyes, and other areas as well. It may spread from one part of the body to another regardless of where the original injury occurred; and RSD can spread in up to 70% of the cases.(1)

In a small number of cases it can become Systemic or body-wide. RSDS is an involvement of nerves, skin, muscles, blood vessels (causing constriction and pain) as well as bones.

A more common description is the 'phantom pain' described in appendages that no longer are attached by amputees due to the nerve damage or sensitization. It can occur in non-amputees as described above and an electric shock may be sufficient trauma to sensitize nerves. This condition can and does have the potential to be debilitating.

Information can be found at:

#147870 - 03/20/03 10:17 PM Re: This Accident Sounds Very Serious
Trumpy Offline


Registered: 07/05/02
Posts: 8532
Loc: SI,New Zealand
Thanks for that, mate!.
I wasn't quite sure what RSD actually was.
One thing I do know now, this is pretty serious stuff, we are talking about here.
I wonder if the average Electrician realises just how serious a large jolt can be!.
After all, most of the damage is internal.
Let's face it, these days if you're not young, you're old - Red Green grin


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