Burn Injury Attorney in Washington DC
Personal Injury Lawyer Working with Serious Burn Injury Victims Throughout the Washington Metro Area
Each year, more than 2 million people in the U.S. seek medical treatment for catastrophic injuries that include serious burn injuries, according to the National Institute of Health. Unfortunately, anywhere from 3,000 to 4,000 people die each year, on average, due to burns. While anyone can suffer a burn injury, the elderly and young children are most at risk.
In some burn injury cases, there is a negligent party who is responsible for the fire or the burn injuries, such as the maker of a product that was dangerous and caused burns. When someone else caused your burn injuries through negligence or wrongdoing, Abelson Personal Injury Law Firm, can help you to take legal action to recover compensation for your losses.
Causes of Burn Injuries
When most people think of burn injuries, the first thing they think of is fire. It is true that fires are a very common cause of burns. In fact, according to the National Fire Protection Association, 95,500 structure fires occurred in apartments in 2011, causing 415 deaths and injuring 4,425 people. Fires also occur at home, at work, in vehicles and outdoors. In 2011 alone, 1,389,500 fires were reported in the United States. These fires caused 3,005 deaths and 17,500 injuries. Based on these statistics, a fire department responded to a fire once every 23 seconds on average, while a home structure fire was reported once every 85 seconds.
Burn injuries also occur for reasons other than fire. Other burn injury causes include thermal burns (burns caused by heat); chemical burns; burns caused by electricity; and burns caused by sunlight or UV rays. Scalding is also one of the most common causes of burn injuries, with the Electrical Safety Foundation International reporting around 100,000 emergency room visits annually due to scalding injuries.
How Burn Injuries Occur
Fires start for many different reasons, and there are many causes of scalding, thermal or chemical burns. For example:
- Vehicle fires are a very common cause of burn injury and frequently occur after car accidents. If someone else was responsible for causing the accident, that person could be held responsible for causing the resulting burn injuries.
- Defective products can result in burn injuries. Wood- or coal-burning fireplaces; kerosene, electric or gas heaters; grills and cooking equipment; cigarette lighters; upholstered furniture; bedding and mattresses; clothing; and flammable liquids are all products that can cause or contribute to burn injury. When a product defect causes a burn or makes the consequences of a fire worse, the manufacturer could be held legally responsible.
- Negligent property maintenance can cause or contribute to burn injuries. For example, a landlord’s failure to maintain a furnace or stove and the failure of a business to have fire sprinklers that function as required could both be considered signs of negligence. A property owner who fails to keep his or her residence safe could be held responsible for injuries that visitors sustain in a fire that occurred due to the owner’s negligence.
These are just a few examples of situations where burns can occur and lead to burn injury lawsuits. If you believe that someone else was responsible for causing your burn injuries, the personal injury lawyer at The Abelson Personal Injury Law Firm, can help you to build a case and take action.
Consequences of Burn Injuries
Burn injuries can be very serious and can sometimes be fatal. The medical consequences of a burn injury vary, depending upon how severely you were burned. A system of degrees is used to measure burn injuries. For example:
- First-degree burns occur when only the first layer of skin is affected. There may be some redness or discomfort, but the skin will normally heal.
- Second-degree burns occur when the first and second layers of the skin are damaged. These burns can be more serious and can require prompt medical attention.
- Third- and fourth-degree burns involve damage not just to the skin but also to the nerves and muscles underneath the skin. Third- and fourth-degree burns can cause significant pain and can sometimes be deadly.
Because burns damage or destroy the layers of the skin, scarring and disfigurement are very common results after a burn injury. Skin grafts may become necessary as a method of treatment. A burn injury may also destroy nerves, meaning that the victim is no longer able to feel pain and loses an important survival mechanism. Sepsis, adult respiratory distress syndrome, and an inability of the skin to prevent loss of body fluids are also common after a burn.
With so many potential medical consequences, burn injuries can be expensive to treat, and it is possible that victims may never fully recover. The person who hurt you could be held responsible for covering all medical costs, including skin replacement, skin grafts, physical therapy and reconstructive surgery. The more serious the burn injuries, the more compensation could be available to the victim. Burn injury victims could also recover damages for pain and suffering, reduced earnings/lost wages, and other economic and non-economic costs of their injuries.
If you have been the victim of a burn injury caused by someone else’s negligence, The Abelson Personal Injury Law Firm, is here to help. We also represent the loved ones of those who have been killed in a fire or as a result of burn injuries. We understand that every case is different and that there is a lot at stake when taking legal action after a burn injury, so we will treat your case with the understanding and compassion it deserves.
Contact us online or call one of our dedicated burn injury attorneys at (202) 331-0600 for a free consultation.