Portland Burn Injury Attorney

Legal team at Paulson Coletti Trial Attorneys PCPursuing Legal Action After a Wrongful Burn Injury

Paulson Coletti is a personal injury trial law firm based in Portland and representing clients throughout Oregon and Washington. The firm stands ready to advocate on behalf of burn injury victims and their families. If you or someone you love was involved in an accident and sustained serious burns, we invite you to contact our firm today for a free review of your case.

Leading Causes of Burn Injuries in the United States

Burn Injuries in Car Accidents
Many burn injuries occur because of car accidents. In the event of a severe crash, vehicles can ignite with passengers still inside. Cars can catch fire after accidents for a number of reasons. In some cases, a defect in the vehicle’s design puts a vehicle at a higher risk of fire in the event of an accident, often because of gas tank placement. More common is a damaged crumple zone. Even the
best-designed cars can leave the engine, gas tank, and other dangerous components vulnerable in the event of an accident.

Faulty Wiring
Wiring can be deemed “faulty” for a few reasons – most commonly, wires are either faulty due to wear-and-tear, they are faulty by design, or they were installed incorrectly. Faulty wiring in homes, vehicles, and other structures is a common cause of fires and burn injuries in the United States.

Defective Portable Heaters
Defective heaters, particularly portable heaters, are a common cause of fires and burn injuries. While in some cases these heater accidents are caused by human error (i.e. putting the heater too close to another object), others are issues of product liability.

Defective Smoke Detectors
Smoke detectors fail to perform their functions for a number of reasons – missing batteries, dead batteries, improper installation, and defective design/manufacturing of the device itself. Landlords are responsible for installing and maintaining a working smoke detector – homeowners maintain this responsibility on their own. Either type of individual can have a valid injury claim, but renters may have a claim against their landlord, rather than the smoke detector manufacturer.

Missing or Defective Sprinkler Systems
While burn injuries aren’t caused by a missing/defective sprinkler system, they can be worsened by it. Older buildings manufactured pre-sprinkler requirements may not be equipped with these systems. Faulty installation or manufacturing could result in sprinklers not going off at a critical time.

Burn Injury Statistics

The following statistics were compiled by the American Burn Association’s National Burn Repository.

  • The average burn injury victim is male, aged 32
  • 20% of burn injury victims are children aged five and under
  • 6.2% of fire/flame injury victims die from their burns
  • A majority of burn injuries happen in the home or place of residence, about 72%

Nearly half of all burn injury victims sustained their injury due to open fire or flame exposure. The second most common origin of burn injuries was scalding by hot liquid – about 33.5% of all victims included in the study. Coming into contact with a hot object was the third leading cause of burn injury, but only accounted for about 8.9% of occurrences.

Treatment for Burn Injuries

Treatment after a burn injury depends largely on the type, severity, and surface area of the burn injury. Some common types of treatment that burn injury patients require include:

  • Skin grafting – Plastic surgery and other types of skin grafting are common treatment options for burn injury victims. Typically, skin grafting involves reconstructing the surface by removing the burned skin and replacing it with a graft from another area of the body.
  • Amputation – The most severe burns require amputation of the affected body part. Usually, this is only reserved for cases of fourth degree burns that extend through all layers of the skin down to the muscle, ligaments, and bone.
  • Rehabilitation – Some burns are severe enough to damage the underlying nerves and muscles, causing loss of movement or impaired movement. Sometimes, mobility can be restored – albeit partially – through rehabilitation.

Many burn injury victims also develop pneumonia (ventilator-associated pneumonia) and other types of respiratory failure due to smoke and ash inhalation. This is usually treated with antibiotic therapy.

Everyone Deserves a Passionate Advocate – We’ve Got Three

At Paulson Coletti, practicing law isn’t just a business. It’s a way of life. To be a trial lawyer, you have to be competitive to the core while simultaneously a compassionate advocate. We believe it’s these qualities that have helped us help so many people recover the compensation they deserve after a wrongful injury. If you or someone you love sustained a serious burn injury, we invite you to contact us today for a free review of your case.