Taming the Flames: Car Accident Burn Injuries and Seeking Compensation

vehicle on fire after an accident

It only takes one moment – a quick glance at your phone, a slight turn of the volume – to change an easygoing car ride into a devastating event. Car accidents can leave behind a trail of physical and psychological scars felt long after the accident has passed.

Among the most common – and lesser-known – consequences of a car crash are burn injuries. 

With the strength to incur psychological, physical, and financial damage, burn injuries can lead to serious complications and ongoing medical care. But if your burn injuries were the result of another driver’s negligent or reckless actions, you don’t have to suffer alone. 

At Hoffman Law Firm, we understand the effects burn injuries can have on your life – both seen and unseen. Keep reading to learn more about burn injuries after an accident and how our team of car accident lawyers can help you navigate this difficult journey and get you the compensation you rightfully deserve. 

How Do Burns Happen in a Car Accident? 

Often, when you think of burn injuries after a car accident, you picture a vehicle encased in flames. While a vehicle fire is one of the most common causes of burn injuries in a car accident, it is not the only source of these types of injuries. 

Chemical Burns

Accidents involving commercial trucks or vehicles carrying hazardous materials can lead to chemical burns. When a vehicle’s occupants are exposed to toxic substances, such as battery acid, coolant, or gasoline, this can cause burns upon contact or inhalation. 

Heat or Thermal Burns 

Certain car parts, such as the engine or radiator, have hotspots or areas prone to producing incredible heat in the aftermath of a collision. When occupants come into contact with these hotspots, they can suffer severe heat/thermal burns. 

Electrical Burns

We often forget that vehicles are just large pieces of machinery, complete with wires and metal. Electrical burns can occur when charged wiring or metal is present or if contact is made with high-voltage power lines in a car crash. 

Vehicle Fires 

Vehicles can catch fire due to several reasons: a fuel line could rupture, electrical components could be at fault, or overheating engines. Flames can quickly engulf a vehicle, resulting in minor to life-threatening burn injuries. 

In the event of a severe car accident, more than one type of burn injury may present itself. Airbags, while in place to protect you, can cause both chemical and thermal burns in a crash. 

When an airbag is deployed, the release of hot gases can melt clothing against the skin, resulting in a chemical burn. Airbags also generate heat as they expand, leaving you with thermal burns.

Treatment for Burn Injuries: The Lasting Impact of an Accident 

Burn injuries are divided into classes based on the extent of the damage to the skin barrier, ranging from first-degree burns to fourth-degree burns. 

  • First-degree burns: The top layer of skin is red and dry, but not blistered. A common example of a first-degree burn is a mild sunburn. 
  • Second-degree burns: Blisters and some thickening may be present on the skin. In some cases, skin grafting is required to repair the wounds. 
  • Third-degree burns: Skin is thickened and has a whitish, leathery appearance. Third-degree burns are most susceptible to infection, blood loss, shock, or even nerve damage. Seek medical attention immediately. 
  • Fourth-degree burns: A third-degree burn that extends to the muscles and bones. This is the most severe classification of burn injuries and has a higher fatality rate than other classes. 

Treatment will be based upon the degree classification of the burn itself. Cosmetic surgeries are often necessary, as well as surgery to keep the affected area flexible. 

As burns begin to heal, the hard part is far from over. Ongoing medical treatment and pain management will be required to ensure complications such as infection, dehydration, or scar tissue buildup do not occur. 

The Psychological Impact 

Long after burn injuries have healed, survivors may feel a lasting impact that goes unseen. Emotional effects of a burn injury can include feelings of anxiety to severe post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD)

This can leave the survivor with feelings of fear, depression, hopelessness or self-consciousness from the extent of their injuries. 

With the help of a Charleston personal injury lawyer, we will ensure that your medical costs and your emotional injuries are represented in your claim. You do not have to suffer the financial burden and emotional weight of a burn injury due to the negligent actions of another. 

Compensation for Car Accident Burns: Physical, Financial, and Everything in Between 

Burn injuries are complex, both in the course of treatment and in the aftermath of a car accident. In your burn injury claim, our car accident lawyers near you will seek the full range of physical, emotional, and financial losses you endured. 

These losses can include: 

  • Property damage to your vehicle and its contents
  • Medical costs, both present and ongoing 
  • Lost wages or job loss due to the injury 
  • Physical and emotional pain and suffering 

Find Relief With a Charleston Burn Injury Lawyer Today 

Board Certified Personal Injury Attorneys of Hoffman Law Firm in Charleston SC

If you are the victim of a burn injury as a result of a car crash, choosing the right personal injury attorney near you could make all the difference to the question of “what happens next?” 

At Hoffman Law Firm, our team makes it our mission to put the needs of your well-being and your loved ones first. We will not stand for injustice and strongly believe that you should never have to navigate the aftermath of a car crash on your own. 

Located in Charleston, SC, we support accident victims throughout the Palmetto State. We have established a reputation for success, as well as great service! 

To meet with a member of our team, schedule your free consultation today. 

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