Most of us have suffered some kind of burn in our lifetime. Whether it was when we touched the stove as kids or leaned up against a grill as adults, most of these injuries probably didn’t even leave a scar, though it didn’t feel like it at the time. Actual burn injuries, though, can be devastating and occur because of a number of different reasons. If you or a loved one has been injured by a burn because of someone else, it’s important you get a good attorney on your side ASAP.
The Results of a Burn Injury
According to the University of New Mexico, there are four classifications for burn injuries. These are:
- Thermal: this is the most common form and the one most of us are familiar with. Thermal injuries can be broken down into four different types:
- Flash: intense heat exposure for a brief period of time, often caused by explosions of propane, gasoline, natural gas and other flammable liquids.
- Flame: prolonged exposure to intense heat. House fires and automobile accidents often have this effect. Clothing that ignites because of stoves and heaters cause this type a lot too.
- Scalding: burns that result from exposure to hot liquids like water, oil, tar and grease. Coffee can also cause a scalding injury.
- Contact: this injury occurs from someone touching hot metals, glass, coals or plastics and can burn deeply.
- Chemical: acids and alkaline substances will continue burning until they are made inactive. Their reaction with lipids in the skin can be severe.
- Electrical: as electricity always takes the path of least resistance, electrical burns can cause injuries far from the actual contact point.
- Radiological: this is a rare form that involves alpha, beta or gamma radiation. Decontamination may be necessary to stop its spread.
Although many burns may be the result of one’s own negligence or just a simple accident, any of the above may also be cause for a personal injury lawsuit or even a wrongful death claim.
Prevalence of Burn Injuries
According to the American Burn Association, roughly 500,000 people will suffer from burn injuries every year. As such, although something like a radiological burn will occur, one resulting from exposure to fire makes up nearly half these cases. Scalding injuries represent at about a third of them with thermal burns being 8% and the others types being less common.
It’s also important to recognize that burns don’t just happen to the outside of the body. When they do, these injuries may affect all three layers of your skin. However, you can also suffer from internal burns too. Ingesting hot chemicals, for example, may scald the inside of your mouth, throat, and even stomach. In the case of something like a house or automobile fire, victims might inhale hot gases, resulting in the same.
On top of that, your bones, muscles and even blood vessels could all be damaged because of a burn injury.
Seeking Damages with a Burn Injury Attorney
You could end up being injured with a burn for a number of reasons as well, none of them being your fault. Some work environments may put employees at risk for them. As we’ve touched on, someone could be responsible for your home or car going up in flames while you’re inside. Everyone is familiar with the famous McDonald’s case where a woman was burned from scalding coffee because the top of her cup wasn’t sufficiently secured (and the coffee was deemed far too hot).
Burn injuries are some of the most painful you can incur. There is often psychological trauma related to them as well. This is why you deserve to be compensated for your suffering or the wrongful death of a loved one if a burn occurred because of someone else.
Get in touch with a burn injury attorney as soon as you’re able to, so that you can ensure you receive compensation for your pain and suffering.