Los Angeles Burn Injury Lawyer
Burn injury survivors endure some of the most horrific and painful injuries that a person can experience. The Los Angeles burn injury attorneys at Mann & Elias understand this. Not only must survivors deal with the intense physical pain of damaged nerve endings, but they must also deal with the emotional and psychological effects of disfigurement and disability. On top of all this, burn injury survivors incur tremendous medical bills that can persist throughout their lifetime, creating an immense amount of stress and uncertainty for burn injury survivors and their families.
Burn injuries come from a multitude of sources such as open flames, explosions, household chemicals, electricity, gasoline, and many more. Examples of negligence range from improper storage of gasoline to supplying an aluminum ladder near power lines to putting too much lighter fluid on a BBQ. Products that are improperly manufactured are also a common cause of burns. There are simply too many combinations to list or predict.
Burns are different than other injuries. They cause deeper emotional and physical scars than an injured back or whip lashed neck. People who overcome burn injuries are called burn survivors, not burn victims. Overcoming a severe burn takes an amazing amount of bravery, courage, and tenacity. Although both emotional and physical scars may always remain, those who overcome the worst, most painful phase of burn recovery are survivors.
In Southern California, most severe burn patients are taken to one of the Grossman Burn Centers. In fact, they treat burn survivors from all over the world. We are lucky to have them here in our community. We at Mann & Elias have had the opportunity to work with the staff at Grossman and we are constantly amazed at how skilled, caring, and dedicated they are to the well being of their patients. For more information on Grossman Burn Centers, go to grossmanburncenter.com.
After medical care has ended, burn survivors are often comforted by knowing they are not alone. Support groups such as the Phoenix Burn Society (phoenix-society.org) are valuable resources for burn survivors and their families.
Not only do burn survivors face astronomical medical bills, they are often unable to return to work for significant periods of time. Unfortunately, after recovering from their injuries, burn survivors often return to work to find their job is no longer available. It is not uncommon for burn survivors to face discriminatory employment practices. Not all law firms can address all of a burn survivors needs. At the Law Offices of Mann & Elias, we are experts at both liability and discrimination.
At Mann & Elias, we are dedicated to assuring that burn survivors are fully compensated. This includes money for lifetime medical care, past and present loss of earnings, and fair compensation for the both the mental and emotional scars. Burn injury cases are complex legal undertakings that demand the skills of an attorney experienced in the specialized field. Burn injury cases can easily be mishandled by well-intentioned general practice attorneys who do not have the experience in the field. You do not want to be your attorney’s first burn case.
Workers at construction sites are subjected to many potentially hazardous situations, including chemical burns. This type of injury can occur when the worker comes into contact with caustic substances that accidentally touch skin or hair, or when airborn particles or fumes are inhaled or become lodged in the eyes. Chemical burns cost workers lost income and can cost employers by slowing down production. OSHA has set forth many worksite regulations in an effort to protect workers from harmful substances and other workplace hazards, but the construction industry is still a leader for on-the-job injuries.
What Accidents Cause Chemical Burns?
Spills, sprays and explosions can cause chemical burns. In an instant, a worker can be burned by workplace chemicals that get onto clothing or skin, hair and eyes. Improper storage, leaky containers and even normal work activities can result in accidents that cause severe burn injuries.
What Types of Burns are Likely to Occur in an Accident?
With chemicals, burns can be of all degrees of severity, from first to third.
- First-degree burns will damage outer skin layers. Similar to sunburn, they cause some redness and pain.
- Second-degree burns take 1-3 weeks to heal and can cause blistering.
- Third-degree burns harm all layers of the skin and will cause swelling and turn colors. There could be scarring enough to require skin grafts.
- The most dangerous burns from chemicals are fourth-degree burns that might even require amputation. They can burn right down to the bone.
What Problems Do Chemical Burns Cause?
A chemical burn can easily cost the worker lost time for medical treatment and recovery time. If the eyes are burned, the worker may lose vision. Severe burns and amputations are very serious and could result in total disability or death. The financial burden of expenses due to bad chemical burns is as great as any other injury. There will be medical expenses, care costs and lost work income.
Thermal burns are burns that occur quickly, from a heat source such as an electrical arc or hot objects. About one-quarter of all serious burns that require hospitalization occur in the workplace. Nonfatal burns can harm skin and leave scarring or require constructive cosmetic surgery. Thermal burns can easily harm delicate lung tissue when hot air is inhaled. In Los Angeles, the Mann & Elias thermal burn injury lawyers are knowledgeable and experienced in representing thermal burn clients and getting those clients substantial awards and settlements to help manage financial damages due to those injuries.
What Accidents Cause Thermal Burns?
Thermal burns are burns caused by excessively heated air on the skin or inhaled into the lungs. There are many workplace dangers that can result in thermal burns to workers:
- Open flames
- Hot liquids (grease, water, chemicals)
- Hot objects
- Corrosive substances like strong acids or alkaloids
- Caustic cleaning agents, drain cleaners, rust removers and other chemicals
What Thermal Burns Might Occur in an Accident?
Thermal burns act like other burns to damage the surface or under layers of the skin. Delicate tissue in the head area such as eyes, nose, and mouth can be damaged, as can lungs and windpipe be damaged from inhaling superheated air. The skin can be harmed in all four degrees of severity; inhaling hot air can destroy lungs and cause death.
What Problems Do Thermal Burns Cause?
Mann & Elias thermal burn attorneys are familiar with the many repercussions endured by workers who have had thermal burns. Lost work time and income is a primary result. Almost all burns would require medical care and many also result in hospitalization. Surgery and corrective repair surgery may result from thermal burns. In the worst case, a worker may die from thermal burns. Other related problems could arise if the worker is burned and then falls from a high location to receive broken bones, fractures and other injuries. Even with use of protective clothing and best workplace safety practices enforced, Los Angeles construction workers are harmed by thermal burns.
The opportunity to become scalded or burned from hot liquid is prevalent at many construction sites. Workers often are around hot liquids in the normal course of their duties. They could be accidently covered with hot spray or a spill of a hot liquid, or they could be hurt while using them as part of their job. Injury attorneys at the Los Angeles law firm Mann & Elias have represented many clients injured in scald/burn accidents and won maximum awards and settlements that helped scald/burn victims recover from those tragic events.
What Accidents Cause Scald/Burn Injuries?
Many construction sites and other places of employment have experienced worker injuries due to scald/burn accidents caused by spillage of hot liquids. Explosions can release hot liquids such as grease or boiling water into the air and workers can get hurt by this accidental spraying.
What Injuries are Likely to Occur from Scald/Burn Incidents?
First, second, third and fourth degree burns can occur during scald/burn incidents. First degree burns are relatively minor, while fourth degree burns could take a life. Many construction accidents that involve burns cause workers to get medical care and recovery could take several weeks or more. A serious scald/burn injury may cause long-term disability or even death. A person who is on an elevated platform when they are burned could fall and receive additional injuries to their bones, head, back or spine.
What Problems Do Scald/Burns Cause?
The major problem with scald/burns is pain and suffering. Other problems will also cause distress.
- When skin is deeply burned, medical attention and a possible hospital stay may be required
- A person may be disabled or never again be able to perform regular job duties
- Time off work is usually a financial burden to most families
- Death or loss of a limb or eyesight can also be devastating to the whole family
- Paying bills while unemployed is difficult or impossible, and it could take a long struggle to obtain workers’ comp pay or an insurance settlement.
Electrocution burns and danger of death from electrocution are ever-present dangers at construction sites. OSHA has established safety procedures that require supervisors at construction sites to help workers comply with protective regulations, but electrocution remains the #4 leading cause of death for workers in this industry, according to the U.S. Board of Labor Statistics (2005) records.
What Can Cause Electrocution Burns?
Getting burned by electrical current during the course of normal work is always a concern for construction workers. As electrocution injury attorneys at Mann & Elias can verify, danger of electrocution is everywhere, despite vigilant protective measures. In simplest terms, electrocution will occur whenever the normal course of an electrical current is mistakenly directed through a human body. Electrical current will make its hot trip wherever the course can travel, including through human tissue.
Electrocution causes serious problems from burns to shock and death. Burns are the most common injury and occur for many reasons:
- Contact with overhead power lines
- Contact with energized sources
- Improper use of extension and flexible cords
- Product defect or failure
- Exposed electrical parts
- Wires with bad insulation, inadequate wiring
- Ungrounded electrical systems and tools
- Overloaded circuits
- Damaged power tools and equipment
What Injuries are Likely to Occur from Electrocution?
The most common injuries from electrocution are minor to severe skin burns. These may be from electrical, arc/flash or thermal sources. Shock occurs as a reflex response to passage of electricity through the body as the current runs from entry to exit points. Fire from faulty electrical wiring or power tools is another source of electrocution burns. High voltage arcs can create thermal heat; this, in turn, causes skin burns. If there is any type of explosive mixture nearby in the air, an electrical spark can set off an explosion that may burn workers.
What Problems Do Electrocution Burns Cause?
Physical injuries range from skin burns to shock, loss of consciousness, broken bones or fractures from resultant falls, and death. Long lasting effects could include paralysis, loss of limbs, and other disabilities. Electrocution burns and injuries could render an employee unable to work for a lifetime.
Motor Vehicle Fires
Construction accidents include a wide range of problems for workers, due to the nature of the industry. Workers use large, heavy and dangerous equipment, power tools, electricity, gasoline, diesel fuel, solvents, chemicals and other dangerous things every day. Much construction also involves building structures that require the use of cranes, ladders, bucket trucks and scaffolding that allows workers to work at heights where any fall would be dangerous. This industry is well known for worker accidents and deaths.
Attorneys at the Los Angeles offices of Mann & Elias Law Firm have recovered millions of dollars for injured workers, including substantial awards and settlements for those who have been injured on the job in a motor vehicle fire. Construction vehicles get poor mileage and have large fuel tanks; they need to be refilled frequently. A worksite may have its own tanker truck on site for this purpose. If fuel is spilled or there is a nearby explosion, the tanker truck and nearby motor vehicles might blow up, causing burns and other injury. With exposed hoses and fuel lines, construction vehicles could also leak fuel and become a fire hazard.
What Accidents Cause Motor Vehicle Fires?
Spill, explosions, leaky hoses, breaks in fuel lines and careless maintenance could cause motor vehicle fires. A faulty part, poor repair of a vehicle and defective hoses can precede a fire event.
What Injuries are Likely to Occur from Motor Vehicle Fire?
According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, in 2010 there were over 1,766 deaths caused by occupational transportation incidents, accounting for over 38 percent of total annual worker fatalities. A good portion of motor vehicle fires occur during crashes or vehicle mishaps. Even when workers are wearing protective clothing, they may get burned while trying to escape from or put out a motor vehicle fire.
What Problems Do Injuries from Motor Vehicle Fires Cause?
Like problems from all other accidents, injuries caused by motor vehicle fires can put workers out of work and into the hospital for a lengthy stay. Depending upon the degree of damage to the body by fire, a worker may:
- Lose weeks to months off the job, or
- Be unable to ever return to work;
- Accumulate extensive medical expenses,
- Have to undergo painful treatment, and
- Endure long recovery processes
All of the above are costly. If a worker is injured on their job by a motor vehicle fire, even despite compliance with OSHA standards, they are entitled to seek compensation for their lost income and expenses related to the accident.
Contact A Los Angeles Burn Injury Attorney
At Mann & Elias, we have resolved several severe burn injury cases. We stop bill collectors, assure fair employment, assemble teams of the finest experts, and pursue claims against every party responsible for the injury. If you or a family member has any questions about burn injury cases, please have them call the Los Angeles burn injury lawyers at Mann & Elias or click here for a free evaluation. Even if you only have general questions, we are happy to help.