In late September, NFPA and the Phoenix Society for Burn Survivors announced the rollout of the first two videos of a new campaign series entitled, Faces of Fire/Electrical, which features personal stories of people impacted by electrical incidents and demonstrates the need for continued education and awareness about electrical hazards in the workplace and at home.
The latest video in the series introduces Amy Acton, Chief Executive Officer of the Phoenix Society, who, at the age of 18, suffered an electrical burn injury while working a summer job at a marina. When the mast of the sailboat she and her colleagues were moving struck an overhead powerline, Amy, who was at the rear of the boat, fell against the metal rudder as the electrical current passed through it. She suffered extensive burn injuries to her neck and hands.
Research tells us that electrical hazards come in a variety of forms, from overhead powerlines to defective wiring or damaged equipment, and workers may be exposed to these hazards in a wide array of work environments. According to Electrical Safety Foundation International (ESFI), powerlines remain a leading cause of electrical fatalities. Between 2011 – 2018, 38 percent of all electrically related workplace fatalities were caused by overhead powerlines. It’s important to remember that safety training is not only vital for electrical professionals, but necessary and essential for the many others who may be exposed to electrical hazards in their daily work activities.
Since her injury, Amy has dedicated her career to advocating for the expansion of burn recovery services and resources of burn survivors and their loved ones. Starting her career as a burn nurse and later a nurse manager at the burn center where she was treated, Amy later joined the Phoenix Society and along with dedicated staff and volunteers has developed and expanded several national programs that have greatly increased accessibility to long-term recovery resources for those in the burn community. We are grateful to Amy for her willingness to share her story with us.
To see Amy’s video and to read more about her work, visit our website at nfpa.org/facesoffire.
Over the course of the campaign we will highlight a new video interview every few weeks. You can view all of the videos, including the first two videos of our series featuring Dave Schury and Sam Matagi, on our . There you will also find free resources to download and share, including fact sheets, tip sheets, infographics and more, in addition to information about electrical safety in both the home and in the workplace.
Burn survivors and their loved ones, first responders, burn support professionals, and community members are invited to join the Phoenix Society for its 2020 World Burn Congress on October 23. Learn more by visiting the Phoenix Society webpage.