Electric shocks and First Aid

What is an electric shock?

An electric shock happens when a person touches an electrical energy source. Electrical current flowing through a part of the body will cause a shock.

What is electrocution?

Electrocution is death caused by electric shock.

Effects of an electric shock

Shock from current at low voltage: your blood pressure could rise or fall, your pulse gets faster, you may have difficulty breathing, you could lose consciousness and you may suffer a heart attack. You could also receive burns at the point the electricity enters and leaves your body on the way to the ground.

Shock from current at high voltage: this is always likely to cause death by electrocution.


What to do?

What should I do if someone gets an electric shock?

NEVER touch the person receiving the electric shock until the electricity is switched off and you are sure it is safe to do so.


If you touch them, you could get an electric shock or be electrocuted yourself.

Action - If the person is CONSCIOUS:

Shout for an adult to help. If the injured person is CONSCIOUS and seems unharmed, he/she should be told to rest.
Call a doctor

Action - If the person is UNCONSCIOUS:

If the injured person is UNCONSCIOUS, open the airway and check breathing; be ready to resuscitate if necessary. Place the casualty in the recovery position and Dial 999 for an ambulance