Every year in the US, there are around 175,000 serious burn injuries requiring treatment at a hospital. The most common type of burn injuries are from contact with fire or flames (43 percent of burn injuries), scalds from hot water (34 percent of burn injuries), and contact with hot objects such as water heaters, grills, stoves, or work equipment (9 percent of burn injuries). Other leading causes of burn injuries include electrical and chemical-induced burns.
Most burns happen in the home (approximately 72 percent), but a significant portion of burns occurs elsewhere, including at work, on roadways, at school, and at hotels and other places of business. While not all burns are necessarily preventable, a sizable number of burn injuries are preventable and are caused by human oversight or error. Where a burn has been at least partially caused by the negligence of another or through a defectively designed or manufactured product, the burn victim may be able to be compensated for his or her injuries by the parties that caused the injury.
Reduce the Chance of a Burn Injury
There are many ways to help reduce the chances of sustaining a burn injury, including:
- Safely store flammable and caustic materials
- Set hot water heaters below 130 degrees Fahrenheit
- Keep flammable material away from wood stoves and heating sources
- Do not smoke in bed, near flammable sources, or in other careless situations
- Wear flame-retardant clothing
- Plan escape routes in your home and workplace
- Install and maintain smoke alarms
- Educate housemates and co-workers on fire safety and prevention
Compensation for Victims of Burn Injuries
Burn injuries often occur as a result of a negligent, reckless, or intentional act on the part of another party. For example, if an employee of a contractor carelessly starts a fire by leaving flammable materials near a heating source, the contractor can be liable for that employee’s actions and can be required to compensate any victims who are burned as a result of the employee’s actions. Property owners also have a duty to make their property safe for guests and therefore can be liable for burns that are caused as a result of preventable conditions on the property, even if the property owner himself did not start the fire. Thus, guests who are burned while at a store, hotel or restaurant may be able to seek compensation for their injuries from those property owners. Manufacturers and sellers of products that cause burn injuries, for example the manufacturer and seller of a toaster that, due to a defective design or manufacturing defect, starts a fire, may also be liable for all injuries caused by the fire.
Call the Experienced Attorneys of De Frank, McCluskey & Kopp for help with Burn Injury Claims
Burn injuries can have a life-altering impact both for those who suffer from the injury and also for their families. If you or a loved one has suffered from a major burn injury, you may be entitled to compensation under the law. Because accidents and injuries may become more difficult to investigate as time passes, and because personal injury claims are generally subject to a statute of limitations, it is important to consult with an experienced lawyer as soon as possible following a burn injury. The experienced attorneys at De Frank, McCluskey & Kopp will work closely with your medical team to understand the extent of your physical and emotional injuries and will help you to identify and recover the maximum compensation to which you are entitled. Contact De Frank, McCluskey & Kopp today for a free consultation.