Burn injuries are among the most painful and permanently scarring injuries a person can sustain. They can occur for a wide variety of reasons, but when they occur because of the negligence of another, victims and their families may be able to recover. While burn injuries are most often associated with fires, people can sustain burns in other ways as well. The medical complications associated with burns can persist for years and result in medical expense, not to mention the psychological and emotional trauma associated with a serious injury. As a result, it is extremely important for burn injury victims to retain legal representation as soon as possible after an accident. The attorneys of the Sibley Dolman Gipe Accident Injury Lawyers, PA, are dedicated to helping burn victims recover for their injuries, and work hard to recover the highest possible settlement or award for each client we represent.
Burns and fires are the fifth most common cause of accidental death in children and adults, and account for an estimated 3,500 adult and child deaths per year.
Causes of Burn Injuries
Burn injuries vary widely in severity, and can require little to no medical care to treatment in a specialized hospital unit. Some burns can cause lasting damage and require long-term medical care. They can cause physical as well as psychological scars, leaving victims with severe pain, lost wages, and overwhelming medical bills. The type of burn you have depends on the cause and the severity to which your skin is damaged.
While burn injuries are most often associated with fires and flames, people can sustain burns in other ways as well. The most common include:
- Thermal burns are caused by fire, scalding liquid or steam, and touching a hot object or such as ovens or irons. Thermal burns due to airbag deployment are due to direct contact with the airbag surface as well as from exposure to the hot gas that leaves the deflation vents of the airbag.
- Chemical burns are caused by solvents, detergents or strong acids that come in contact with the skin, or chemical explosion.
- Electrical burns are caused by coming into contact with an electrical current.
- Radiation burns are caused by the sun, ultraviolet light or contact with nuclear radiation, such as x-rays or radiation therapy to treat cancer.
- Friction burns occur when a hard object rubs off some of your skin. They are common in motorcycle and bike accidents.
Types of Burn Injuries
Burns are generally categorized into 4 categories, depending upon severity and how deeply your skin has been damaged. The higher the degree, the more severe the burn is. The degrees are defined as follows:
- 1st Degree – These are the least serious burns. In a 1st degree burn, the outermost layer of skin is burned, but not all the way through. These burns involve skin redness, pain, and swelling. Generally, no medical attention is required for a 1st degree burn. These burns usually heal within a week.
- 2nd Degree – In a 2nd degree burn, the epidermis (outer layer of skin) and the dermis (2nd layer of skin) has been burned. Blisters generally develop and they are usually accompanied by significant pain and swelling. These burns can take weeks to heal and may leave a scar or cause a permanent change in the color of your skin.
- 3rd Degree – These are sometimes called a “full thickness burn”. They destroy two full layers of the skin. Instead of turning red, the burn can take on a charred or white appearance. There won’t be any pain as this type of burn damages nerve endings. A skin graft may be used in the treatment of this type of burn.
- 4th Degree – These are the deepest and worst type of burns. They are potentially life threatening and destroy all the layers of your skin, as well as a person’s bones, muscles, tendons, and even organs.
The degree of burn can also change if the damaged skin keeps spreading and the injury becomes deeper.
Burns can lead to many complications, including infections and bone and joint issues.
There are many different types of events that may result in burn injuries. Some of the more common include:
- Chemical spills
- Car accidents
- Industrial accidents
- Electrical accidents
- Airbag deployments
- Cooking accidents
- Barbecue fire due to a propane tank explosion
After a burn injury, it is important for victims to record as much information about the incident as possible. In addition, people with serious burns should be certain to seek appropriate medical attention as soon as possible.
Contact a Clearwater Burn Injury Lawyer Today to Schedule a Free Consultation
People who sustain burn injuries may be entitled to significant compensation for any economic and noneconomic losses they may have sustained. The best way to ensure that you get the compensation you deserve after a burn injury is to consult with an experienced Clearwater personal injury attorney as soon as possible. The lawyers of the Sibley Dolman Gipe Accident Injury Lawyers, PA, are committed to helping people who have sustained burn injuries recover for their injuries. To schedule a free consultation with one of our attorneys, call our office today at (727) 451-6900 or contact us online.