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Columbia Burn Injury Lawyer

Burn Injury Lawyers in Columbia, SC

A burn injury can be an unbearably painful and costly experience. Burn injuries vary in degree of severity, medical intervention, and recovery duration. Once the source of the burn and damages are accessed, medical interventions taken may include first aid all the way to reconstructive surgeries, and skin grafts. Victim’s of a burn injury may experience such pain they must be placed in a medically induced coma. Permanent scarring and disfigurement often accompany a severe burn injury.

Victim’s of a burn injury resulting from another’s party’s reckless and negligent actions, warrants a victim and their family to seek compensation for all damages in a civil proceeding.

If you or a loved one were seriously injured with a burn injury, you need to have someone working on the case immediately. The Columbia Burn Injury Lawyers at the Strom Law Firm can ensure that your personal injury claim is timely initiated, preserved, and filed to seek the compensation you deserve.

Facts on Burn Injuries

The American Burn Association states that over 486,000 Americans suffered from burn injuries in 2015. Forty-thousand burn injuries are known to have required hospitalization with another 30,000 requiring treatment at burn centers. Learn more about burn injury law from our experienced personal injury attorneys.

Every 2 hours 35 minutes, one civilian fire death occurs. In 2016, there were 3,390 civil deaths resulting from fires from residential and non-residential structures, vehicles, outside and other unclassified fires other than structural or vehicle. 73% of burn injuries requiring treatment at a burn center occurred within the home, 8% taking place on the job.

Especially vulnerable are children and disabled individuals with 24% of all burn injuries occurring to children under the age of 15. The 5th leading cause of death in the United States for children age 1-4 is an unintentional fire or burn injury. Children under the age of 5 are 2.4 times as likely as the general population to suffer burn injuries requiring emergency medical care. The probability of young adults ages 20-29 suffering a burn injury is 1.5 times the risk of the general population.

As of 2016, 96.7% of burn victims treated at burn centers survive. Sadly, survivors will likely endure life-long physical limitations, adjustment difficulties, and serious scarring. According to the World Health Organization, non-fatal burns are a leading cause of morbidity, including prolonged hospitalization, disfigurement and disability, often with resulting stigma and rejection.

Burn injuries cause damage to the skin’s protective barrier, providing an opening for bacteria to sneak in. Burn injuries weaken your immune system, thus the body is less able to fight off this additional bacteria exposure. Infections may present themselves not only at the area of injury, but within the bloodstream and vital organs.

The Many Sources of Burn Injuries

Columbia Burn Injuries LawyerCommon causes of injury resulting from a burn may include fire-flame, contact with a hot object, corrosive chemicals, cancer treatments, electricity, hot liquid scalds, accidents and incidents taking place in the home, on the job, while participating in recreational activities and while on the road. These burn injuries are often catastrophic injuries. Knowing and communicating the precise type of burn is crucial to obtaining immediate and proper medical interventions which will minimize long term impact. The many sources of burn injuries include:

  • Car accidents
  • Truck Incident
  • Motorcycle Crash
  • Electrical burns: Electrical issues stemming from unprotected circuits, outlets and old or faulty wiring may result in sparks and electrical currents. These sparks and electrical currents create a hazardous environment susceptible to burn injury. Burn injuries due to electrical currents according to the National Institutes of Health are categorized into four types:
    • True injuries occur when a physical body becomes one with an electrical current. This type of electrical burn is often fatal.
    • Lightning injuries occur when one or more short energy bursts of high voltage flow through a physical body. Damages from a lightning burn injury may present as external burns as well as causing internal damage.
    • Flame injuries occur when an arc, spark or electrical current ignites with clothing or another nearby object. This electricity can pass through the skin. The greater risk often lies in the items that ignite, catching fire, causing mild to severe burn injuries.
    • Flash injuries are generally mild, resulting in superficial burns that typically do not require medical attention beyond first aid. This type of burn injury heals relatively quickly. Electrical currents do not travel through the body during a flash burn injury. Examples may include grabbing heated objects such as hair straighteners, griddles or irons.
  • Steam and hot liquid scalds: A burn injury caused by hot liquid is known as a scald. Anyone and everyone is vulnerable to scalding. Children and infants are at risk of a scald burn injury when exposed to excessively hot bathwater. Similarly, an unattended child in the kitchen may result in a scald burn injury. Another area of exposure to a scald burn injury is in the food service industry. Restaurant employees, equally those working in the kitchen and in the front-of-the-house, as well as the restaurant’s invitees are all subject to scald burn injuries from hot beverages and soups.
  • Fire and Flames: survivors of fire or flame burn injuries often suffer severe and sometimes fatal consequences. Examples of situations one may encounter a burn injury from fire or flame include:
    • Car accidents; a Truck Incident; and Motorcycle Crashes
    • Arson
    • Purposeful and controlled burning of materials like yard debris
    • Accidental fires
    • Unattended lit cigars and cigarettes
    • Unattended campfires and bonfires
    • Playing with matches
    • Usage of fireworks
    • Usage of flammable liquids including hydrogen, ammonia, gasoline, ethanol, butane and propane. These flammable liquids add fuel to the fire and may result in dangerous explosions leading to a burn injury.
  • Cancer Treatments: Radiation is most commonly prescribed as an effective treatment regime for cancer patients, reducing and ideally eradicating tumors. Medical professionals may also prescribe radiation to address other tumors of the physical body, blood and thyroid disorders, and order diagnostic imaging such as X-rays, MRIs, and CT scans. However, too much exposure to radiation through these treatment methods exposes patients to potentially harmful burn injuries, tissue, skin, other internal damage.
  • Corrosive Chemicals: If you regularly come in contact with harsh and toxic chemicals, you are at risk for suffering a corrosive chemical burn injury. Chemicals commonly used for cleaning such as bleach, ammonia, battery acid, chlorine, and dental whitening and cleaning products are the most frequent culprits of chemical related burn injuries. The use of these harsh chemicals not only impacts lung performance but their corrosive properties can penetrate right through your skin. The most severe instances of this penetration includes burns to and even through your bone.

Degrees of Burn Injuries

The four primary categories of burn injuries:

  • First-degree burns: Minor in nature, first-degree burns affect the outer layer of skin, known as the epidermis. A first-degree burn is often red in color, moist, painful to touch with mild swelling. Medical treatment for a first-degree burn is usually limited to first aid, unless the burn injury covers a large area of the body or the victim is an infant or elderly. First-degree burns generally heal within a week or so.
  • Superficial second-degree burns and Second-degree burns: Burning of the epidermal layer of skin, reaching to the next layer, called the dermis occurs during a second-degree burn. A “superficial second-degree burn” may appear pink in color while a second-degree burn may appear white in color and dry. These burns will present as painful blisters, glossy in appearance from leaking fluid. A “superficial second-degree burn” generally heals on its own, usually within two weeks. A second-degree burn can take three to four weeks to resolve.
  • Third-degree burns: A third-degree burn occurs when the epidermal (outermost layer) and the dermal layers of skin are both completely destroyed by the burn and the damage extends subcutaneously. Third-degree burns affect hair follicles, sweat glands and underlying tissues of the location of burn. Third-degree burns will have significant texture to them. They will be charred, and many times have a leather-ish appearance. Although third-degree burns may initially be painless due to patches of first and second degree burning, third-degree burns are incredibly serious and many times will result in skin grafting or additional reconstructive techniques and may require blood transfusions and/or additional fluids to maintain blood pressure. Third-degree burns require in-patient hospital care and implementation of a strict pain management plan throughout healing and recovery. Third-degree burns often leave permanent scars and even disfigurement.
  • Catastrophic (4th, 5th, and 6th degree) burns: Catastrophic burns go beyond the skin and burn through fat (4th degree burns), muscle (5th degree burns) and bone (6th degree burns). Victims of a catastrophic burn often experience widespread inflammation, organ failure and may go into shock, requiring a medically induced coma to assist in healing the physical body. Catastrophic burns may require amputation of impacted body parts due to the severity and size of burn. These sometimes fatal side effects may not present themselves until a week or two after the initial burn. Catastrophic burns may be fatal due to the extreme impact placed on the body’s vital processes, making a victim more vulnerable to infection.

Damages available following Burn Injuries in Columbia

  • Medical Treatment: Victims of burn injuries should seek immediate medical treatment. Depending on the severity of the burn injury this may include emergency medical transport, emergency room services, hospitalization, diagnostics, a medically induced coma, skin grafting and other reconstructive surgeries. Severe burn injury victims may require indefinite care at a costly long-term skilled nursing facility.
  • Lost Wages: Depending upon the severity of burn injury, victims may seek to recover current lost wages as well as future lost wages. Burn injuries may require victims to miss weeks or months of work for treatment and recovery. For the most severe burn injuries, victims may not be able to return to work due to damages suffered.
  • Non-Economic Damages: personal injury awards typically include compensation for non-economic damages such as loss of consortium with a spouse, emotional pain and suffering, mental anguish and distress, and physical pain and suffering creating a perpetual sensation of intense pain. In the case of a burn injury, compensation for non-economic damages for scarring and disfigurement may also be sought. Victims of a burn injury may suffer permanent scarring with the possibility of permanent disfigurement despite reconstructive and cosmetic efforts. Location and size of the burn injury considerably impact valuation of these non-economic damages. A small scar on a limb usually is not thought to be as serious as a similarly sized scar on the face. Likewise, a small scar on a limb is not thought to be as serious as a scar that covers the entire limb. The Columbia Burn Injury Lawyers will consider the victim’s level of humiliation and embarrassment surrounding the scarring and disfigurement when seeking these non-economic damages. Despite cosmetic interventions to correct a scar, victims may never look or feel as they did before suffering a burn injury.

Are you looking for legal representation? Contact the Columbia Burn Injury Lawyers at Strom Law Firm by calling 803-252-4800 for your free case evaluation.

Columbia Burn Injury Attorneys

Pete Strom Attorney
Burn Injury Attorney, Pete Strom

If you suffer a burn injury caused by a defective device, unsafe work conditions, or a child being left unsupervised with a dangerous product, a lawsuit may be needed to recover compensation for a victim’s damages. If another party’s behavior, reckless or otherwise, causes you harm, you should not have to worry about the added financial strain due to your burn injury. Victims deserve compensation for medical treatment costs, lost wages, and other non-economic damages suffered.

If you suffered burns in an accident or any other way in Columbia, Richland County, or anywhere else across South Carolina, contact us. We offer free case evaluations and we do not collect a fee unless we recover for you. Contact our burn injury lawyers at 803-252-4800 or online and find out if we are able to help you.

Frequently asked questions

Should I be medically worried if I suffer from burn injury? Burn injuries cause damage to the skin’s protective barrier, providing an opening for bacteria to sneak in. Burn injuries weaken your immune system, thus the body is less able to fight off this additional bacteria exposure. Infections may present themselves not only at the area of injury, but within the bloodstream and vital organs.

What are some common sources of burn injuries in Columbia?

Common sources of burn injuries from accidents and incidents taking place in the home, on the job, while participating in recreational activities and while on the road include:

  • Electrical burns including true, lightning, flame and flash
  • Steam and hot liquid scalds
  • Fire and Flames from
  • Car accidents
  • Truck Incident
  • Motorcycle Crashes
  • Arson
  • Purposeful and controlled burning of materials like yard debris
  • Accidental fires
  • Unattended lit cigars and cigarettes
  • Unattended campfires and bonfires
  • Playing with matches
  • Usage of fireworks
  • Usage of flammable liquids including hydrogen, ammonia, gasoline, ethanol, butane and propane
  • Cancer Treatments such as radiation
  • Corrosive Chemicals such as bleach, ammonia, battery acid, chlorine, and dental whitening and cleaning products

How much is my Columbia burn injury worth?

There are many factors to consider when determining the worth of your burn injury.

  • Cost of Medical interventions required to treat the burn injury. Depending on the severity of the burn injury, this may include emergency medical transport, emergency room services, hospitalization, diagnostics, a medically induced coma, skin grafting and other reconstructive surgeries. Severe burn injuries may require indefinite care at a costly long-term skilled nursing facility.
  • Lost wages current and future for time missed from work. Some burn injuries may require you or a family member to miss weeks or months of work for treatment and recovery. For most severe burn injuries, you may not be able to return to work due to damages suffered.
  • Non-Economic Damages including loss of consortium for your spouse, emotional pain and suffering, mental anguish and distress, physical pain and suffering creating a perpetual sensation of intense pain, as well as scarring and disfigurement. You may suffer permanent scarring with the possibility of permanent disfigurement despite reconstructive and cosmetic efforts. The location and size of your burn injury will considerably impact valuation of these non-economic damages. The Columbia Burn Injury Lawyers will consider the level of humiliation and embarrassment surrounding your scarring and disfigurement when seeking these non-economic damages. Despite cosmetic interventions to correct a scar, you may never look or feel as you did before suffering a burn injury.

What damages are available to me following a burn injury in Columbia?

You and your family are entitled to seek adequate, just and fair compensation for medical treatments, current and future lost wages and non-economic damages suffered as a result of another party’s behavior, reckless or otherwise. You should not have to worry about the added financial strain as a result of suffering burn injury.

What are the four primary categories of burn injuries and their recovery times?

  • First-degree burns are generally minor in nature. You can expect a recovery time for first-degree burn of one week and you may only need first-aid care.
  • Second-degree burns including superficial, affect the epidermal and second layers of the skin. Superficial second-degree burns generally heal on their own within two weeks while second-degree burns can take three to four weeks to resolve.
  • Third-degree burns burn through and destroy the epidermal and dermal layers of the skin with damages extending subcutaneously. Third-degree burns affect your hair follicles, sweat glands and underlying tissues at the location of the burn. Third-degree burns require in-patient hospital care and implementation of a strict pain management plan throughout your healing and recovery. Third-degree burns will often leave permanent scars and even disfigurement.
  • Catastrophic burns go beyond the skin and burn through fat (4th degree burns), muscle (5th degree burns) and bone (6th degree burns). You or your family member may often experience widespread inflammation, organ failure and go into shock, requiring a medically induced coma to assist in healing the physical body. Catastrophic burns may require amputation of impacted body parts due to the severity and size of burn.

What are some common side effects of suffering a burn injury?

The severity of injuries you may suffer from a burn injury can vary from superficial and recovering within a week to potentially catastrophic and life altering, even ending.

What if I don’t feel hurt immediately after suffering a burn injury?

Third-degree burns may initially be painless due to patches of first and second degree burning, but third-degree burns are incredibly serious and many times will result in skin grafting or additional reconstructive techniques. Third-degree burns may also require blood transfusions and/or additional fluids to maintain blood pressure. The sometimes fatal side effects of catastrophic burn injury may not present themselves until a week or two after the initial burn. The fatal side effects impact the body’s vital processes, making a victim more vulnerable to infection.

But my burn injury is only minor?

If you or your loved one is a victim of a burn injury resulting from another’s party’s reckless and negligent actions, regardless of the degree of burn, you and/or your family are entitled to seek compensation for all damages in a civil proceeding.

What should I do immediately after suffering a burn injury? If you have suffered a burn injury, you should seek immediate medical treatment once the source of the burn is established so damages may be fully accessed.

Why should I hire a Columbia Burn Injury Lawyer at Strom Law Firm?

Strom Law Firm Columbia, SC LawyersA burn injury can be an unbearably painful and costly experience. If your burn injury is due to another party’s reckless and negligent actions, you are entitled to seek compensation for all damages in a civil proceeding and you should have someone working on the case immediately. The Burn Injury Lawyers at the Strom Law Firm can ensure that your personal injury claim is timely initiated, preserved, and filed to seek the compensation you deserve. We offer free case evaluations and we do not collect a fee unless we recover for you.


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