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Research Papers

Human fatalities due to outdoor electrocution with animal traps

Authors:

A. S. Senavirathne,

District General Hospital, Matara, LK
About A. S.
Consultant Judicial Medical Officer
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J. Warushahennadi ,

University of Ruhuna, LK
About J.
Senior Lecturer, Department of Forensic Medicine, Faculty of Medicine

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S. G. H. Ambepitiya

District General Hospital, Matara, LK
About S. G. H.
Consultant Judicial Medical Officer
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Abstract

Introduction:

Trapping animals with live electric wires is a practice known to be used for protecting the crops from wild animals. Unauthorized cables which are connected to the distributing system of the electricity board are laid on agricultural lands to trap animals such as wild pigs and wild boars.  The serious issue is associated with this practice is the accidental entrapment of humans to these traps resulting in injury and death.

 

Methodology:

This descriptive study analyzed the socio-demographic profile of the victims, injury patterns, determined the manner of death and the judgments given by the judiciary.  

 

Results:

The study includes 14 deaths recovered from the agricultural fields with electrocution injuries on which the medico-legal autopsies were conducted by the researchers in two hospitals of the southern province.

 

All the victims were males and the majority was in the 40-60 years. Electric entry marks were present in all on various parts of body. Injury varied due to different mechanisms like trapping, wrapping and griped   with the cables. Majority of victims did not have any relationship with culprits. The live wire has been removed from the scene in 10 cases and the bodies were decomposed in 5 cases.

 

Police identified culprits in 9 cases and those were filed in the Magistrate courts and the accused were bailed out. None of the cases directed to high courts. The manner of death was concluded as an accidental.

 

 

Conclusion:

It is important to implement the rules and regulations against the illegal practice of trapping of animals using high voltage electrocution.
DOI: https://doi.org/10.4038/jrcs.v24i1.64
How to Cite: Senavirathne, A.S., Warushahennadi, J. and Ambepitiya, S.G.H., 2019. Human fatalities due to outdoor electrocution with animal traps. Journal of the Ruhunu Clinical Society, 24(1), pp.23–31. DOI: http://doi.org/10.4038/jrcs.v24i1.64
Published on 13 Dec 2019.
Peer Reviewed

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