Common chemical burn can happen in an instant and cause serious, debilitating injuries. Depending on the type of burn and where it occurs, the injury can cause permanent damage. For example, if someone suffers a chemical burn to the eyes, which permanently affects their sight.
Chemical burns can also damage human tissue, which can lead to permanent scarring and disability. It is important that a person who sustains a chemical burn receive immediate medical attention and speak with a legal professional as soon as possible after the accident.
Who Is at Risk for Chemical Burns?
Many chemical burns occur in the workplace. In fact, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) reports that more than 13 million Americans work in jobs where their skin and eyes are exposed to chemicals, which puts them at a greater risk. These industries include:
What Are the Most Common Chemical Burn Injuries?
A chemical burn can occur to any part of the body, but there are areas more susceptible than others. It often depends on the industry and work setting. A chemical burn can result from improper use or clean up, lack of safety equipment, incorrect storage or an unauthorized use. Common chemical burn occur on the skin, to the eyes, or to the hands and fingers.
Common Chemical burn are diagnosed based on the level of pain experienced, the amount of damage done, the depth of the burn and possible signs of infection. Most medical professionals will assess the burn based on its depth and the extent of the injury. Injury to the top layer of skin, also known as the epidermis, is referred to as a superficial or first-degree burn. An injury to the second layer of skin, also known as the dermis, is called a second-degree burn or partial thickness or dermal injury. The most serious types of burns are third-degree burns, also referred to as a full thickness injury. Chemical burn injuries can include disfigurement, infection, scarring, muscle and tissue damage, depression, PTSD, and blindness.
Liability for a Chemical Burn Injury.
Determining who is responsible for the chemical burn injury can depend on a variety of factors. Many times, it can be a question of negligence if the injury occurred to someone else due to the actions or behavior of another person who is handling the chemical. To establish a case for negligence, the following elements must be proven:
- The person causing the injury owed a duty of care to the injured person;
- That the person responsible breached his or her duty of care;
- That because of this breach of duty of care, an injury occurred; and
- The injured individual suffered damages as a result of the breach of duty.
An employer can be held liable if the chemicals that caused the burn were stored improperly or if the employee was not given proper training or protection from the chemical.
How Compensation is Determined for a Chemical Burn Injury in Florida.
Given that any legal action regarding a chemical injury will be a lawsuit, monetary damages may be recovered through a settlement or a judgment. The amount awarded can vary depending on how severe the injury is, how the defendant’s conduct played a part in the injury and various other facts regarding the incident. Sometimes the at fault defendant can be held strictly liable for causing the chemical burn injuries regardless of whether the defendant’s conduct is negligence. The law will sometimes impose strict liability for chemical burn injuries when the defendant’s conduct involves an ultra-hazardous activity.
Due to the fact that chemical burns can result in serious injuries, permanent scars, and even loss of normal bodily functions, burn injury recoveries can really help those who have suffered. These settlements and judgments from jury verdicts can help a person deal with the extensive medical costs involved in treating these injuries and help with the impact on what would otherwise be a normal life. If the defendant’s actions were particularly egregious, it is possible that punitive damages, meant to punish the person causing the injury, may be imposed as a deterrent to try and prevent that defendant as well as others from engaging in activity with such a high risk of serious injury.