I pride myself in helping clients through their toughest times.- Bill O’Mara
Attorney at Cooper Hurley Injury Lawyers
Burn Injuries Can Lead to Serious Complications Such as Amputation and Disfigurement
By John Cooper, Virginia Personal Injury Lawyer
Burn injuries are some of the most serious and painful kinds of injuries I see in my line of work as a personal injury lawyer in Virginia. In some of the gravest car or truck crashes a fire may engulf vehicles claiming the lives of their occupants or leaving them with horrendous injuries. Burns can also be caused by electrical shocks, industrial injuries or building fires.
Every year as many as a million people suffer from burn injuries in the United States. When burns are involved in an accident, lawsuits can entail highly scientific and complex legal issues. I have previously represented a number of burns victims as well as the child of a man who died in a fiery trucking crash on I-64 in Norfolk. if you get a bad enough burn, the body can't heal itself. Burns can leave permanent scarring.
If you have suffered burns, your may be disfigured and unable to live a normal life again. You may face massive medical bills. A driver, the owners of an apartment complex or another premises or an electrical company may have been responsible for your injuries through their negligence. You may have grounds to sue them for damages.
SOURCES OF BURN INJURIES
Burns can range from minor burns from touching a hot pan to chemical or radiological burns that require special treatment. Here are some of the sources of burn injuries.
Thermal burns are the most common type of burns we see. They are caused by explosions, flames, hot liquids and skin coming into contact with hot materials like coals or hot glass.
Harmful chemicals can cause burns, in particular strongly acidic or alkali substances, and require special care to prevent further injury to the skin.
As the name suggests, electrical burns are caused by electricity. Burns caused by electrical shocks can be very sudden and serious. The victim may suffer other side effects such as cardiac arrest. Unlike other burns, it’s not always apparent if you have suffered an electrical burn from the outside and these burns should be diagnosed by a medical professional.
Radiological burns are caused by radiation and the victim will often require decontamination. They are among the rarest kinds of burns.
The Severity of Burns
Your chances of making a full recovery will also depend on the severity of your burns. They range from first to third-degree burns.
FIRST DEGREE BURNS
First degree burns cause damage to the epidermis, the outer layer of the skin, only. Characteristics include swelling and pain to the victim. First degree burns are the least serious kind.
SECOND DEGREE BURNS
Second degree burns go beyond the epidermis into underlying skin called the dermis. Second degree burns can cause extreme pain. They are characterized by blisters and severe pain and swelling.
THIRD DEGREE BURNS
Third degree burns are very serious and potentially life-threatening. If you suffer third degree burns, the thickness of the skin and the underlying muscle area are burned. Burns often destroy nerves, meaning they can actually be less painful than second degree burns but can lead to complications such as amputations.
If you have suffered burns in a car accident, an industrial accident or any other kind of act or omission by another party, you may have grounds to file an injury lawsuit. Call us at Cooper Hurley Injury Lawyers at (757) 455-0077 for a free consultation.
John Cooper is a veteran of personal injury law practice in Virginia. A native Virginian, he was raised in Norfolk and Virginia Beach. He has more than 20 years of experience handling personal injury cases and recently handled the largest auto accident settlement in 2010, according to VA Lawyers Weekly. The award provided $3.5 million to a child whose young father died when the vehicle he was a passenger in was rear-ended by a careless truck driver.
Jim Hurley has been practicing law throughout Virginia for more than two-and-a-half decades. During his career, he has tried more than 100 jury trials — a staggering number — and handled hundreds more that were settled out of court. He is guided by the principle that the client is in charge of his or her case and should be kept fully aware of the litigation process. Jim has been awarded an AV Rating by Martindale-Hubbell, the highest rating given, for his practice of law. He was named in Virginia Super Lawyers in 2014, 2015, 2016.
Bill O’Mara started his legal career in 2008, moving back to his home town of Chesapeake, VA. He has practiced in the field of plaintiffs’ personal injury and other litigation. He has gained extensive court room and trial experience, including contested trials before judges and juries across Hampton Roads. In 2014, Mr. O’Mara joined Cooper Hurley Injury Lawyers as an associate attorney. He became a partner in 2017.
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Cooper Hurley awards three $2,000 college scholarships annually to high school seniors in the Tidewater and Eastern Shore areas of Virginia. Eligible students can submit an essay of 500 to 1,000 words on the subject of Distracted Driving. We established this program to aid worthy scholars and to raise awareness of the tragic consequences of distracted driving, which we encounter too often in our practice.