Sri Lanka’s electrocutions reached an alarming situation in 2019 – PUCSL report

(COLOMBO, LANKAPUVATH) – Sri Lanka reported 103 fatalities due to electrocution in the year 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 of Sri Lanka reported the highest fatalities due to electrocution in 2019 while Western Province reported the lowest. The Southern Province reported 30 fatalities due to electrocution in the year 2019.

The Southern Province reported 97 fatalities due to electrocution in the period of 2015-19 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 to protect cultivation or to kill wild animals has been identified as the main reason for the highest fatalities due to electrocution in the country while small scale electric repair work at home/ workplace and Activities near power lines also have contributed to the electrocutions in 2019.

The latest statistics show, males are more exposed to electrocutions as 86 percent from total fatalities due to electrocution reported in 2019 were males which stood at 83 percent 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 occurring electrocution, is only one (01) 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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