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Burned in a Car Crash? Here’s What You Need to Know

Jun 02, 2021 Car Accidents, Catastrophic Personal Injury, Vehicle Wrecks
  1. 1. How Do Burn Injuries Occur During Car Crashes?
  2. 2. What Should I Do if Someone Suffers a Severe Burn?
  3. 3. Burn Victims Face a Long and Difficult Recovery
  4. 4. Who Is Responsible for Crash-Related Burn Injuries?
  5. 5. Can Victims Receive Burn Injury Settlements?
  6. 6. How Can a Personal Injury Lawyer Help Burn Victims?

It’s not uncommon to suffer a serious burn during a car accident, especially if you’re exposed to heat, toxic chemicals, or electricity during the crash. While some burn injuries heal quickly, others require intensive, ongoing medical care and can cause permanent disfigurement.

A burn injury claim can also lead to a significant settlement amount for the victim. Learn more below about these complicated injuries, your legal rights, and how a good lawyer can help you win a burn injury case.

How Do Burn Injuries Occur During Car Crashes?

Your skin is made of multiple layers of tissue. When heat, electricity, or chemicals damage these layers, you get a burn. Medical professionals categorize burns based on their depth:

  • First-degree burns: The damage is only to the top layer of your skin.
  • Second-degree burns: The burn reached the second layer of your skin and involves blistering and more intense pain.
  • Third-degree burns: All the layers of your skin are affected and there’s permanent damage to tissue, blood vessels, and nerves.

“Many people don’t realize that burns can sometimes take time to fully develop. What might seem like a minor first-degree burn at the scene of a vehicle crash might become a more serious injury as tissue dies and blisters form.”

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During a crash, there are many ways someone can suffer a burn injury. Common causes include:

  • Airbag deployment
  • Contact with dangerous chemicals (chemical burns)
  • Car fires and explosions
  • Electrocution or contact with a live current
  • Exposure to hot metal, steam (scalding), or other debris

Each type of burn causes different injuries and requires different kinds of treatment.

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What Should I Do if Someone Suffers a Severe Burn?

Someone who suffers from a burn injury needs assistance immediately. A burn can happen in a matter of seconds, and the effects can last a lifetime. At Crosley Law, we know burn injury survivors that could have experienced improved recoveries if their injuries were attended to more quickly and more effectively.

A severe burn is an emergency with serious risk of death, so the first reaction should be for bystanders to call 911.

Burn Victims Face a Long and Difficult Recovery

Burn injuries can be life-threatening and are often life-altering. While burns have a very high rate of survival, complications are common, and burn injuries can often interfere with an individual’s ability to return to work and their pre-injury lifestyle. This is especially true if there is permanent scarring or amputation.

Depending on the severity of your burns, you might need skin grafts and other surgeries. Infections and other complications can slow your recovery. Many survivors also struggle to cope with the physical and emotional trauma of burns and require intensive therapy. If you’re unable to work and you have medical bills stacking up, it’s easy to become overwhelmed and anxious.

“Many survivors also struggle to cope with the physical and emotional trauma of burns and require intensive therapy.”

After a serious burn, your pain and suffering should be undeniable. But insurance companies often don’t factor them into the settlement offers they extend. They are trying to save money and increase profits by offering you the lowest amount possible after you’ve been hurt.

Before you accept an insurance settlement, make sure you consult with an experienced injury lawyer at Crosley Law. We can help you understand the value of your burn claim.

Every burn injury is different. At Crosley Law, we carefully investigate burn injuries, looking for their root causes.

Sometimes, the forces of a collision cause fire, steam, or hot debris. A lit cigarette can ignite spilled gasoline or chemicals. A defective car or truck part might explode or cause a fire. When we take on a case, we assess all these possibilities.

We also look at all the insurance coverage involved in the crash. Depending on the circumstances surrounding your injuries, you might have claims against negligent drivers, trucking companies, manufacturers, distributors, or other parties.

Then, we start building the case: consulting with experts, reviewing documents and crash data, and interviewing witnesses. Our cutting-edge approach to personal injury claims has earned us a track record of success—we’ve recovered hundreds of millions in jury awards and settlements for our clients.

RELATED ARTICLE: Don’t Miss Out on Product Liability Compensation After a Car Wreck

Can Victims Receive Burn Injury Settlements?

If you have a solid case and a knowledgeable burn injury attorney, you have a chance of securing financial compensation for your medical expenses, lost income, emotional pain, and other damages.

Records of your injuries, diagnosis, and medical treatment increase your odds of receiving the settlement you deserve.

A burn-related personal injury lawsuit could result in:

  • Economic damages: Covers financial costs for medical attention and lost income, both past and future. This is where records come in handy.
  • Non-economic damages: Addresses the less defined costs of physical and mental pain and suffering. Consider how your life and future have changed.
  • Punitive damages: If the defendant’s actions were especially reckless, or there’s concern they might behave similarly in the future, punitive damages serve to punish them and discourage a recurrence.

When you work with an experienced burn injury lawyer who knows how to uncover and present important evidence, you have a greater chance of walking away with a burn injury settlement that makes a real difference to your quality of life.

However, insurance companies aren’t always willing to pay fair settlements. If your lawyer cannot negotiate a reasonable settlement, they will have to file a burn injury lawsuit for you and take the case to trial.

How Can a Personal Injury Lawyer Help Burn Victims?

Because of the challenges that a burn injury survivor faces, the survivor or their family members should contact Crosley Law as soon as they are able after a burn injury. Our law firm prioritizes the attorney-client relationship by listening carefully to your case and your goals and doing all we can to support your healing.

Contacting the knowledgeable and experienced Texas personal injury attorneys at Crosley Law can help you focus on your recovery while we do the work of investigating the crash, documenting your injuries, filing necessary paperwork, negotiating with insurance companies, and much more. You can request a free consultation by completing our online form or calling Crosley Law at 210-LAW-3000 | 210-529-3000.

References

American Burn Association. (n.d.). Burn incidence and treatment in the United States: 2016. Retrieved from http://ameriburn.org/who-we-are/media/burn-incidence-fact-sheet/

Harlan, Jordan. Harlan Law PC. (2021, March 3). How a Lawsuit Can Help You With Your Burn Injury. Retrieved from: How a Lawsuit Can Help You With Your Burn Injury – Harlan Law, PC (harlanpc.com)

NHTSA. (2018, May). Traffic safety facts 2016. Retrieved from https://crashstats.nhtsa.dot.gov/Api/Public/ViewPublication/812554

The content provided here is for informational purposes only and should not be construed as legal advice on any subject.

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