Alarming rise in electrocutions in 2019 | Daily News

Alarming rise in electrocutions in 2019

103 fatalities in 2019, as opposed to 89 in 2018:

Sri Lanka reported 103 fatalities due to electrocution in 2019, up from 89 fatalities reported in 2018, the electrocution report 2019 released by the Public Utilities Commission of Sri Lanka (PUCSL), the electricity sector regulator, revealed.

The Southern Province reported the highest fatalities due to electrocution in 2019 while the Western Province reported the lowest. The Southern Province reported 30 fatalities due to electrocution in 2019.

The Southern Province reported 97 fatalities due to electrocution in the period 2015–2019 which stood as the highest in the country compared to the electrocutions reported in other provinces in the same period.

Drawing power lines to illegally protect cultivation or to kill wild animals has been identified as the main reasons for the high fatalities due to electrocution in the country, while small-scale electric repair work at home or in the workplace and activities near power lines also have contributed to the electrocutions in 2019.

The latest statistics show that males are more exposed to electrocutions as 86 percent of fatalities due to electrocution reported in 2019 were males, which stood at 83 per cent in 2018. People who are at the age range of 40 to 50 stood as the most vulnerable age group exposed to electrocution in 2019.

According to the international benchmark, the possibility of electrocution occurring is only one electrocution for one million people per year. In 2019, the Sri Lankan electrocution index stood at five times higher than the global benchmark.

The PUCSL has introduced number of safety regulations to uplift the electricity safety of the country and is in the process of building a national network of safety ambassadors representing all the villages in Sri Lanka to strengthen people with knowledge of safe use of electricity.

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