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Sandy Springs Burn Injury Attorney
Burn injury victims are often left with severe physical and psychological scarring following their accident. Those suffering from burn injuries are left with an enormous amount of medical bills that missing work makes it impossible to catch up on. When another’s negligent actions cause burn injuries, whether at an apartment or workplace, the negligent parties should be held accountable for the physical and emotional harm they’ve caused.
The last thing you may want to worry about is pursuing legal action against the at-fault party, but recovering compensation from a burn injury lawsuit can help ease the financial stress so that you can focus on your recovery.
The Sandy Springs burn injury lawyers at Ashenden & Associates are prepared to fight for your rights against a negligent landlord or other party responsible for your burn injuries. If necessary, we’ll take your burn injury case to court to recover the compensation we know you deserve. To schedule a free consultation with a burn injury lawyer at Ashenden & Associates, call 770-394-8909 today.
How Common Are Burn Injuries in the U.S.?
You may be surprised how often burn injuries happen in the United States. According to the American Burn Association, almost 500,000 burn injuries are treated in the U.S. every year. Another burn injury statistic from the American Burn Association is that 94% of these burn victims survive, but the immense pain and suffering that they endure are immeasurable.
Types of Burn Injuries
Burn injuries are diagnosed based on how deeply they penetrate the skin and tissues below. They range from first-degree burns to fourth-degree burns. Burns that are of the fourth degree are the most severe and can be life-threatening. These burns go the deepest and affect all layers of skin, reaching the muscles, tendons, and bones.
First Degree Burns
First-degree burns are the most common burn injuries. Many people will experience this level of burn injury at some point in their lifetime. First-degree burns only affect the outer layer of skin, the epidermis. These burns can cause redness at the burn site, pain, and dry skin. A sunburn or touching a hot cup of coffee can cause first-degree burns.
Second Degree Burns
Second-degree burns are more painful than first degree burns and cause more damage to the skin. These burns penetrate the epidermis and the top portion of the dermis layer of skin. The burn area will be red, painful, swollen, and blistered. Touching a stove burner or spilling scalding water can cause second-degree burns.
Third Degree Burns
Third-degree burns penetrate through the epidermis and dermis layers of the skin, sometimes reaching the muscles, tendons, and bones. The burn site may appear white and have a waxy texture. Those suffering from third-degree burns usually experience extreme pain, even though the burn has destroyed the nerve endings in the skin. Depending on the severity of the third-degree burn injuries, burns may be upgraded to fourth-degree burns.
Burn Injury Treatments
The severity of your burn injury will determine the type of medical treatment required. Minor burn injuries can usually be treated at home, while severe burn injuries require medical attention. The various treatments for burn injuries based on severity are listed below.
- First-Degree Burns: Avoid applying ice to the burn. Instead, run cool water over the burned area. If it’s a sunburn, you can treat the area with aloe vera gel. For thermal burns, use an antibiotic ointment and cover the area with gauze. Depending on the pain level, you can also take over-the-counter pain medication.
- Second-Degree Burns: Treatment for a second-degree burn is similar to treating a first-degree one. You may need a stronger antibiotic cream, which your doctor can prescribe. Ointments that contain silver, like silver sulfadiazine, are often recommended since they kill bacteria. If the burned area is severely swollen, you can elevate it to try and reduce inflammation.
- Third-Degree Burns: These severe burns can be life-threatening and need medical attention. Patients with third-degree burns will typically require skin grafts, a medical procedure where an uninjured area of the skin is taken to replace the burned area. The skin-grafted area will then heal on its own. Other treatments may include IV fluids to prevent shock and dehydration and to keep the blood pressure down. Depending on how deep the burn has penetrated, a patient may require breathing treatments and feeding tubes if the burn has affected the face or neck.
Common Causes of Burn Injuries
Burn injuries can happen in many different ways. Some of the most common causes of burn injuries are:
- Apartment fires
- Chemicals, like acids or drain cleaners
- House fires
- Motor vehicle accidents
- Hot metal
- Faulty electrical wiring
- Hot liquid or steam
- Chemical plant explosions
- Fire detector malfunctions or lack of fire safety devices
Motor Vehicle Accidents
Car accidents can lead to burn injuries ranging from minor to more severe. While a car bursting into flames following a car accident doesn’t happen as much as the movies want us to think, it can happen when the gas tank has been ruptured and begins to leak. Electric cars are also increasing the number of car accidents that have resulted in fires due to their electric batteries. Other burn injuries that a car accident victim can experience are:
- Airbag deployment caused by the release of aerosol sodium hydroxide
- Lithium batteries exploding inside the vehicle
- Chemicals leaking from the car like gasoline, coolant, battery acid, etc.
- Electrical problems caused by the car accident
If your burn injury was sustained in a motor vehicle accident, you could pursue legal action against the negligent driver. Contact the Sandy Springs burn injury lawyers to understand your legal rights following a car accident.
House and Apartment Fires
Burn injuries can happen in apartment or house fires, especially when the proper fire safety measures aren’t taken. Landlords in Sandy Springs are required to uphold maintenance standards for their tenants to ensure their safety in the case of a fire or other building emergency. Apartment fires are extremely dangerous because they can spread throughout the building quickly. If you live in a rental home or apartment, the landlord is required to do the following:
- Provide a fire extinguisher for each apartment and every floor if the building is more than three levels high.
- Have at least one smoke detector inside the bedroom, one outside the bedroom, and one on each building level. Homes should have at least one smoke detector every 500 square feet. Your home or apartment should also have carbon monoxide detectors.
- Avoid blocking any exits.
When landlords cut corners, the results can be catastrophic. Without fire safety equipment, apartment fires can do extensive damage when they can spread from unit to unit. In addition to providing fire extinguishers and smoke detectors, landlords are required to perform routine tests and inspections to ensure all devices are working correctly. If your landlord acted negligently, leading to burn injuries caused by a fire, you could have grounds to sue.
Chemical Plant Explosions
When chemicals at the plant mix with extreme heat and fire, the results can be catastrophic. Chemical plants are dangerous environments where extreme safety measures and precautions must be taken to keep everyone safe. Chemical plant explosions can be triggered by:
- Use of dirty or contaminated chemicals. These chemicals are unstable and can cause a chemical reaction and explosion
- Violating safety regulations.
- Lack of maintenance on equipment like boilers, pressure vessels, and storage tanks.
- Ignoring corrosion on equipment
Workers involved in a chemical plant explosion can often experience life-threatening injuries and even death. Burn injuries caused by a chemical plant explosion are typically severe and cause permanent scarring and disfigurement. If you lost a loved one from burn injuries sustained from a chemical plant explosion, you could have grounds to file a wrongful death lawsuit. Contact the wrongful death attorneys at Ashenden & Associates to learn more about your legal options.
Anyone working in a high-risk environment is at risk of being burned. People in jobs that involve working with fire, electrical wiring, and hazardous chemicals can potentially be burned while at work. The following professions are at a higher risk of being burned while on the job:
- Laboratory researchers
- Chefs and other food service employees
- Construction workers
- Janitorial employees
- Landscaping and other outdoor workers
The types of burn injuries that individuals can sustain from workplace accidents range from minor to serious burn injuries and depend on what caused the workplace accident. Thermal burns can happen when a person is exposed to extreme flame or heat, like boiling water, open flames, or cooking oil. Another type of burn that occurs from a job is chemical burns. These burn injuries can be caused by exposure to chemicals and other toxic materials, like cleaners, fertilizers, acids, and corrosive chemicals. Individuals that work with electricity are in danger of an electrical burn caused by coming in contact with an electrical current. An electrical burn can happen if someone touches a live electrical wire, power line, or electrical socket. These burn injuries often cause more damage to the skin than chemical or thermal burns.
If you were burned at work, your worker’s compensation could cover treatment for your necessary burn injuries. In Sandy Springs, workers’ compensation is no-fault, which means it doesn’t matter if you were responsible for your burn injury. These benefits will cover any burn injury that occurred while you were at work. It’s important to note that workers’ compensation does not cover damages like pain and suffering and emotional distress. If you’ve been burned at work and your injury was caused by negligence, you should discuss your legal options with an experienced personal injury attorney at Ashenden & Associates.
Burn Injury Liability
Determining the party at fault for your burn injuries can sometimes be difficult, depending on the accident’s circumstances. When the negligence of another causes a burn injury, the liability will be established based on where the burn injury occurred and how it happened. If you’ve suffered a burn injury and believe it was caused by the negligence of another, you need an experienced burn injury lawyer to handle your personal injury claim. The attorneys at Ashenden & Associates have experience handling various burn injury claims and know how to find the party responsible for burn injuries and recover compensation.
If your landlord’s negligent actions led to your burn injuries, you may have grounds to file a burn injury lawsuit against them. Landlords are responsible for performing routine fire safety checks, providing fire extinguishers, and ensuring their property meets the fire safety code. Following apartment building fires, landlords may try to convince burn victims not to file a lawsuit by convincing them they don’t have the legal right based on their lease. When you’ve suffered minor or severe burns caused by your landlord’s negligence, don’t let them bully you into not taking legal action. Burn injuries can often be serious and require medical treatments that you should not be responsible for when another person’s negligence caused your injury.
A Sandy Springs burn injury lawyer at Ashenden & Associates will work with you to prove your landlord’s negligence and ensure you receive maximum compensation for your injuries. If your landlord is acting negligently, pursuing a burn injury case against them can help prevent their other tenants from suffering the same fate.
Hazardous Work Environments
According to the U.S. Occupational Safety and Health Administration, workplace fires and explosions cause over 5,000 burn injuries yearly. When those workers suffer burn injuries caused by workplace negligence, they could sue for damages caused by the fire or explosion. However, before agreeing to receive workers’ comp benefits, you must speak to a burn injury lawyer to understand your rights. Many insurance companies would deny compensation if the burn injury victim received benefits from their worker’s comp claim.
If you’ve suffered minor or extensive burns caused by a workplace accident, discuss your legal rights with our Sandy Springs burn injury lawyers. At Ashenden & Associates, we have pursued workplace accident lawsuits against companies big and small. No matter how large the company is, our attorneys have what it takes to recover compensation for your burn injuries.
Negligent Property Owners
Property owners are required to follow fire safety rules and regulations. When they fail to do so, they can put their customers and employees at risk. Some businesses are at a greater risk of having a fire breakout, like nightclubs, hotels, restaurants, grocery stores, and fitness centers. Patrons and employees at these locations can suffer burn injuries like thermal and electrical burns. If the property owner acted negligently, leading to a burn injury accident, they could be liable for damages like medical treatments, lost wages, and more.
Can You Sue for a Burn Injury?If you suffered a burn injury, the circumstances of the accident will determine whether you can pursue legal action against a responsible party. Not all burn injury lawsuits fall under one category, but a knowledgeable burn injury lawyer will be able to evaluate your case and determine what type of legal action you can go after. The burn injury attorneys at Ashenden & Associates have experience with the following burn injury lawsuits:
- Premises Liability Claims: If your burn injury occurred on another’s property, you could file a premises liability claim. Burn injuries that can lead to premises liability claims are burns that occur at a business or restaurant. Private property owners can also be held liable for a severe burn injury.
- Product Liability Claims: If you suffered a burn caused by a defective product, you could have a product liability claim. A defective product can cause damage due to manufacturing defects, improper packaging, and design errors. One common burn injury that has resulted in product liability claims is electric car batteries overheating and catching fire.
- Workplace Accidents: As mentioned above, if your burn injuries occurred while you were at work, you could pursue legal action for damages.
- Motor Vehicle Accidents: If you were in a car accident and suffered burn injuries, you could have grounds to file a lawsuit if the person at-fault was acting negligently when the accident occurred.
Helping Burn Injury Victims Prove NegligenceYour experienced burn injury lawyers at Ashenden & Associates will work to prove negligence occurred, resulting in your burn injury. In order to prove negligence, the four elements of negligence must be present.
- The party responsible owed you a standard duty of care. For example, a landlord owes tenants a standard of care by maintaining fire safety rules and procedures to ensure a safe residence. This means they should perform routine maintenance checks on fire extinguishers and provide and maintain smoke detectors. If there have been any recalls on fire extinguishers or smoke detectors, it’s their responsibility to remove and replace them.
- The responsible party breached that duty of care. Following the landlord’s example above, if they knowingly did not remove defective or recalled fire extinguishers or smoke detectors, they have breached their duty of care. Had the landlord replaced that equipment, a fire may not have occurred or caused injuries.
- The breached duty of care caused the accident. To prove that your landlord’s negligence caused your burn injuries, your attorney must show that they failed to recognize the duty of care. If your landlord received emails warning about defective fire safety equipment and did not take the proper measures to remove them, this can help prove they acted negligently.
- The accident caused damages. If you were burned in an accident that could have been prevented with proper safety equipment, you could pursue legal action against your landlord. To prove that their negligence caused damages, your attorney will use medical bills, lost wages, and other evidence proving that the accident directly caused your burn injuries and that you’ve suffered physically, emotionally, and financially.
Burn Injury DamagesDamages awarded in burn injury cases are categorized as economic and non-economic. Economic damages have a financial value, like medical bills, physical therapy, and lost wages. Non-economic damages are harder to assign a monetary value to since they include pain, suffering, and emotional distress. The severity of your burn injuries will determine the amount of compensation you’re awarded. The burn injury attorneys at Ashenden & Associates will work to recover the following damages for you:
- Lost wages
- Pain and suffering
- Medical expenses
- Physical therapy
- Permanent scars or disfigurement
- Emotional distress
- Damaged property
- Counseling services
- Mobility devices and other home-health equipment
- Funeral and burial expenses if the injuries resulted in a wrongful death
Call Sandy Springs Burn Injury Lawyers at Ashenden & Associates Today
Accidents resulting in burn injuries can result in permanent scarring and disability, in addition to the emotional and mental anguish that follows such a traumatic event. Burn injuries can often require extensive medical treatments and cause a person to miss work during recovery. If your burn injuries were caused by the negligence of another, the responsible party should be held liable for the damages they’ve caused.
The Sandy Springs burn injury attorneys at Ashenden & Associates have experience pursuing various types of burn injury cases, ranging from a personal injury lawsuit to a premises liability claim. To learn more about pursuing a burn injury lawsuit, contact our law firm at 770-394-8909 to schedule a free consultation.