Burn Accident Injury Overview
I’m Ed Smith, a Sacramento personal injury lawyer. Burns inflict some of the most painful injuries. The pain, disfigurement and scarring can mean months of surgery, skin grafts and hospitalization. Infection, in the initial months and after surgery, is a constant threat. Many times, someone who has suffered a serious burn is unable to fully return to work or engage in activities once common in their daily life. It is essential that someone who has suffered a serious burn injury be properly compensated for their financial loss. If a family member was killed by a burn injury, the person’s loved ones likely face a financial crisis.
What Is Meant by a Burn Injury?
Burns vary by their source. The most common types of burns are:
- Chemical burns: This type of burn usually results from skin or eye contact with a highly acidic or alkaline material. The chemicals can elicit deep tissue destruction that is often not noticeable initially. The offending substance can be inhaled, touched or swallowed. Chemical burns happen in the workplace, at home and, on occasion, as part of a physical assault.
- Thermal burns: External heat sources, such as a flame or steam, can cause a thermal burn. They are also the result of explosions, hot liquids or touching a hot surface.
- Radiation burns: Burns in this category include those from exposure to sunlight or tanning beds, radio transmitters or those associated with radiation therapy.
- Electrical burns: Due to electrical current injury, these burns can result from touching poorly maintained electrical sources. Overloaded circuits, poorly insulated wiring and tools that are not grounded all can cause burns due to electrical current.
Incidence of Burn Injuries and Death
There are roughly two million burn injuries annually. According to the American Burn Association, there were 486,000 injuries from burns that necessitated hospitalization in 2016. House fires caused 2,745 deaths while 310 were caused in vehicular crashes when fire was involved and 220 from varied sources. Many of the deaths are caused by smoke inhalation. The odds of dying in a fire are roughly 1 in 1,442. Overall, 400,000 burn victims were hospitalized in 2016 with six out of every 10 people going to burn centers.
Statistics of Burn Injuries
Almost 70 percent of burn victims are males. The majority at 43 percent are injured by thermal burns while 34 percent are scalded and 4 percent suffer electrical burns. Three percent of burn victims have chemical burns. Seventy-three percent of the burns happen in the home, and about 8 percent occur at work. Five percent are the result of vehicle-related fires and during recreational activities.
Burns From Recalled Devices
There is a history of devices of all kinds catching fire and causing burns. A recent problem occurred with the Galaxy Note 7 smartphone. According to the Consumer Product Safety Commission, the lithium-ion battery used in the phones overheated and caught fire. The phones were recalled September 15, 2016, and were either replaced or refunded by the manufacturer. Approximately, one million units were involved.
If a defective device caused injury or death, in California, a manufacturer, distributor or retail store can be held liable. Under strict liability laws, it is not necessary to prove negligence but rather a plaintiff must show that the defective product caused the injury. Showing that a product is dangerous and proving negligence are not the same, and the latter is a costly endeavor.
Physical Injury Due to Burns
Some individuals who suffer a serious burn injury do not survive, and this can cause severe financial repercussions on family members. Others suffer severe burns that leave them scarred or disfigured. The scar tissue often restricts movement, particularly when the extremities are burned. Under these circumstances, many burn victims are unable to return to work, and some require help with household chores they were able to do in the past. Rehabilitation therapy can help, but it is often long and arduous.
Sacramento Personal Injury Lawyer
I’m Ed Smith, a Sacramento personal injury lawyer. Medical care for burn injuries can span months or even years with long hospital stays and corrective surgery. If the burn was due to faulty wiring, an exploding device or other types of negligence, an experienced injury lawyer can help. Reach out to me at (916) 921-6400 in the Sacramento area and (800) 404-5400 toll free or online. I will give you free and friendly advice.
I’ve been helping Northern Californians for over 35 years. In that time, I have assisted with wrongful deaths and other types of negligence-related injuries.
I am a California member of the Million Dollar Advocates group. This nationwide forum is composed of trial attorneys who have won $1 million or more for clients.
You can read additional articles on personal injury law right here on AutoAccident.com.
Photo Attribution: https://pixabay.com/en/hospital-emergency-room-entrance-
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