Common Causes and Damages of Burn Injuries
Written by AskTheLawyers.com™
Written by AskTheLawyers.com™
Burns can be extremely painful and may occur in a variety of situations. It’s important to remember that if you have suffered from a serious burn caused by another party’s negligence, you may be eligible to seek legal compensation for your damages. Although thermal burns caused by heat are the most commonly discussed, burns can occur due to a variety of factors, including via chemical and electrical accidents. It’s important to exercise extreme caution when handling or working around any potentially flammable substance, and seek immediate medical attention if you or a loved one have sustained a burn.
The severity of a burn depends on its status as a first, second, or third degree burn.
First, second, and third degree burns often vary in their cause and severity. First degree burns typically affect only the outer layer of the skin. While the burn site may be red and painful, the skin rarely blisters with a burn of this degree. Second degree burns are more serious, and often include blisters, wet-looking wounds, an irregular burn pattern, and even unusual skin discoloration. Third degree burns are the most serious kind of burn and generally cause permanent damage; for a burn to be considered third degree, it must have destroyed every layer of skin, exposing the fatty tissue underneath.
There are a variety of burn types, including but not limited to:
- Dry heat burns
- Wet heat burns
- Radiation burns
- Chemical burns
- Electrical burns
- Friction burns
- Heated object burns
- Sun burns
Any of these burns may come in first, second, or third degrees, increasing in their severity with the degree. Pain, redness of skin, blisters, peeling skin, swelling, and in extreme cases white or charred skin and shock are all symptoms of burns to watch out for.
Some causes of burn injuries are more common than others, including:
- Car accidents
- Defective products
- Residential fires
- Workplace fires
- Gas explosions/fires
- Chemical spills/exposure
- Inhalation of smoke
These are not the only causes of burns, but these are some of the most commonly seen. With thermal or heat burns being the most common type, it’s important to have an effective fire safety plan for your home, workplace, and any other location in which you spend a significant amount of time.
It’s important to know that a variety of damages can be sought to help compensate for a burn injury.
Damages which may be compensable in a burn injury case depending on the circumstances of the situation include the following:
- Medical expenses. Injuries resulting from a burn can include tissue damage, lung damage, PTSD, and, in worst case scenarios, death.
- Lost wages (or impairment of earning capacity) as a result of hospital stay-time, or, for the loved one of a burn victim, the necessity to temporarily or permanently extricate themselves from work in order to provide care.
- Lifecare expenses, such as life support or ongoing medical expenses for chronic injuries.
- Vocational rehabilitation.
- Pain and suffering, for both emotional and physical distress.
- Loss of consortium (the services of a close family member) and loss of care and companionship.
- Wrongful death.
- Funeral expenses.
Burn injuries are painful and can be deeply traumatic. Don’t wait to seek medical treatment if burned, and reach out to a personal injury attorney if you suspect your burn might have been caused by another party’s negligence.