Burn Injuries in a Car Accident
Advances in safety technology have made vehicle fires much less common than they used to be. As too many Texans find out, car accident burn injuries still affect thousands of drivers in the United States every year. The National Fire Protection Association reports that in 2018, there were 212,500 vehicle fires nationwide, resulting in 560 deaths, 1,500 injuries, and $1.9 billion in property damage.
Burn injuries are among the most painful car injuries a person can sustain in an accident, and they’re difficult and expensive to treat. That puts car fire accident victims in a difficult spot. An experienced personal injury attorney can help.
If you’ve suffered a car crash burn injury in Texas, The Law Offices of Hilda Sibrian can help you recover full and fair compensation for your injuries. We serve both English-speaking and Spanish-speaking clients and have more than 15 years of experience helping Texans recover from serious car accidents. Our car accidents lawyers help our clients recover substantial compensation. Call our Houston office, visit our contact page, or talk to one of our online chat operators to find out how.
What Are the Different Burn Degrees?
Burn injuries are rated according to four different categories, based on the extent of the damage to your skin and other tissues. The four categories are:
- First-degree burns. First-degree burns are the least painful kind of burns. These burns typically cause damage to the top layers of skin only. Common symptoms of first-degree burns include skin swelling or inflammation, turning red, and peeling. Most first-degree burns can be treated with home remedies, such as antibiotic ointment and running the affected area under cool water. If you’ve suffered a first-degree burn to a sensitive area of your body, such as your face or groin, it may be necessary to see a doctor.
- Second-degree burns. Second-degree burns extend deeper than first-degree burns and reach the inner layers of your skin. Because of this deeper damage, second-degree burns often cause blisters and make the skin red and sore. If the second-degree blisters burst, they can make the skin appear wet and sickly. They also carry a significant risk of infection because of the greater damage to the deeper layers of your skin. Second-degree burns are usually treated by a doctor, though some can be treated at home if the affected area isn’t on a sensitive part of your body.
- Third-degree burns. Third-degree burns extend through every layer of the skin. As a result, these burns can do severe damage and be excruciatingly painful. In some cases, the victim’s nerves are so severely damaged that they feel no pain, despite their severe injury. Third-degree burns often leave the affected area charred and leathery in appearance. The skin may also take on a waxy color or turn brown or black. Immediate medical attention is necessary if you’ve suffered a third-degree burn. There’s a high risk of infection and additional damage.
- Fourth-degree burns. Fourth-degree burns include all of the damage that third-degree burns inflict but continue past the skin to damage your bones, muscles, and tendons. As with third-degree burns, seek medical attention immediately if you’ve suffered a fourth-degree burn.
Treatments for Burn Injuries
Getting medical treatment as soon as possible after a burn injury is critical to maximizing the victim’s potential recovery. Some of the treatments commonly used to treat serious burn injuries include:
- Antibiotic creams or ointments applied to the affected area to fight infection
- Oral antibiotic medications to fight infections in severe burn cases that have a greater risk of infection
- IV fluids to keep the victim properly hydrated
- Medication to help the victim manage their pain
- Surgery to repair the damaged skin and other tissues
- Skin grafts to repair the cosmetic damage to the skin
- Physical therapy to help the victim move more comfortably and perform basic tasks
What to Do After a Burn Injury Caused by a Car Accident
Because car crash and burn injuries are often quite painful and costly to treat, it’s important to protect your right to claim compensation. A lawyer can give you specific advice, but here are some general steps to take if you’ve suffered a burn injury after a car wreck:
- Call 911 and get medical treatment right away. The longer it takes for you to see a doctor, the greater your chances of suffering severe, permanent damage as a result of your injuries.
- After calling emergency responders, save as much evidence from the scene as you can. Take pictures of all the vehicles involved in the accident, as well as the area around the crash. If there are any witnesses to the accident, get their contact information.
- As soon as you’re able, write down everything you remember about what happened. Be as detailed as possible. The events of the accident are likely to be fresher in your mind in the days immediately after the crash, and you may forget significant information during your recovery.
- Stay off social media and avoid saying anything in public about what happened. You don’t want to give the other driver and their insurance company any ammunition to use against you and deny you fair compensation.
- Don’t sign anything from any insurance companies, especially if you haven’t spoken to a lawyer. If you sign a settlement offer before an attorney has a chance to review your case, you might agree to lower compensation for your injuries than what you deserve.
- Keep all your medical records and any other evidence you have to support your claim.
- Speak to a car fire accident lawyer. Ours at Hilda Sibrian can fight for you while you concentrate on your health.
Contact Our Burn Injury Attorneys in Houston
The injury attorneys at The Law Offices of Hilda Sibrian provide knowledgeable counsel to those who’ve suffered severe burns in accidents in Houston. We know how painful burn injuries can be, and how costly treatment and recovery can be. Seeking fair compensation is crucial, and we’ll be ready to put our skills to work for you. For a free case review, reach out to us online or call our Houston office today.