More than 200,000 burn injury victims are treated in U.S. emergency rooms each year. Surprisingly, only about 13% have suffered burns in a fire. The most common cause of burn injuries requiring treatment is non-fire “thermal contact.” In simple terms, that means coming in contact with a hot object, such as a stove burner, hot iron, or radiator. Other common types of burn injuries are associated with:
- House fires
- Fires associated with car accidents
- Bonfires and other outdoor fires
- Scalding with hot water, oil or other liquid
- Chemical contact
- Electrical currents
Regardless of the cause, burn injuries can be very serious. A severe burn injury may require painful debridement and skin grafting. Burn wounds are extremely susceptible to infection, and may also:
- Send the body into shock
- Destabilize body temperature
- Dangerously reduce blood volume
- Impact bone and joint movement
- Leave significant scarring and ridging
- Cause respiratory difficulties
Medical professionals separate burns into three categories, associated with the depth of the burn injury:
- First-degree burns: First-degree burns are the least serious, and often do not require medical attention. These burns damage only the top layer of skin.
- Second-degree burns: Second-degree burns damage the first and second layers of skin, often causing blistering. While these burns can often be treated at home, second-degree burns covering a large area or multiple second degree burns can be serious and may require medical treatment. In some cases, a second-degree burn may require skin grafting.
- Third-degree burns: Damage to all layers of skin is the most common characteristic of third-degree burns. However, having penetrated all layers of the skin, a third-degree burn may also damage muscles, bones, and tendons. Treatment varies, but may include a series of surgeries.
Liability in Burn Injury Cases
Burn injuries occur in many different ways, and responsibility for burn injuries must be determined on a case-by-case basis. Some third parties who may be liable for burn injuries include:
- A negligent driver who causes a car accident in which the victim is burned
- The manufacturer of a dangerous product or piece of equipment that burned the victim
- The owner or manager of an apartment building that was not maintained safely
- An employer or general contractor that did not observe safety standards
The many different types of burn injuries stem from a wide range of incidents, and the analysis as to who might be legally responsible for burn injuries is case-specific and sometimes complicated. In addition, different time limits will apply and different types of experts will be required for different types of burn injury cases.
An Experienced California Burn Injury Lawyer Can Guide You
Answering tough questions about complex liability issues, searching for expert witnesses and gathering evidence are all necessary to successfully pursue a California burn injury case. However, when you’ve been seriously injured, are in pain and may be facing extensive medical care, you likely don’t have the time, energy, or mental bandwidth to focus on these issues. That’s where we come in.
At the Thompson Law Offices, our team of burn injury lawyers are committed to pursuing the full value of every burn injury lawsuit claim. While you focus on your recovery, we’ll be focused on building a strong case on your behalf and pushing for the compensation you deserve. We have gotten positive burn injury verdicts in the past and we can do the same for you or your loved one. You don’t have to go it alone for one more day. Request a free consultation from an experienced burn injury lawyer and discover the difference a knowledgeable advocate can make.