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About Burn Injuries
Every year, nearly 1 million people suffer a burn injury in the U.S.
Thousands die from their burns, and many more live with permanent discomfort, disfigurement and disabilities.
Common causes of serious burns include:
- Car crash fires;
- House, apartment and trailer fires;
- Space heaters;
- Electrical accidents;
- Fire pits and grills;
- Flammable clothing and products; and,
- Dangerous chemicals.
Identifying the causes of fires
Most of the fires that cause burns are preventable.
But identifying exactly what caused the fire can be difficult. Cause and origin experts are commonly retained to review Fire Department investigations and reports. It is important that they begin their work as soon after a fire as possible.
Car fires often start after a collision. These fires can be due a mechanical failure.
Home heaters can cause burns because of a design or manufacturing flaw. Smoke detectors or sprinklers may fail, or buildings do not have the proper fire escapes. Sometimes defective appliances, such as stoves or cloth dryers, can cause fires. Gas lines can start fires when they are not properly designed, inspected and maintained.
Determining who is ultimately responsible for fires, and finding the proper insurance, can be a long and complicated process.
It is vitally important that an investigation begins as soon as possible.
- Fire safety experts need to establish the cause while the scene of the incident is intact.
- Evidence needs to be documented as quickly as possible.
- Locating and interviewing witnesses while their memories are fresh can be very helpful in building a case.
We understand that burn injuries are devastating.
People with serious burns endure a long and painful struggle. They often need surgery and extensive rehabilitation, which is both expensive and painful.
- The Phoenix Society promotes the physical and psychological recovery of people living with burn injuries. They offer articles and resources online, and provide one-on-one assistance through local hospitals.
- The Spiegel Burn Foundation provides advocacy and support for burn injury survivors and their families.
- The Northwest Burn Foundation helps burn survivors in Oregon and Washington improve their quality of life.
Attorney Kevin Coluccio has successfully handled numerous burn injury claims over the last 30 years. He has helped injured people and their families get the care they need to recover their health and well-being.
Burn Injury Case results by Kevin Coluccio
Case: “Doe” v. Auto Manufacturer and Medical Center
Result: $3 million settlement
Doe entered a rehabilitation center seeking help from an addiction. She was not supposed to be allowed to leave, and her car keys should have been locked up. The center was responsible for making sure that she was properly cared for and protected during her recovery.
In an impaired and confused state, Doe took her car keys and left the center. She was involved in a serious car crash, which resulted in a massive fire. The fire started due to a mechanical defect in the car’s fuel system.
The victim suffered serious and extensive burns.
Kevin Coluccio took on both the rehabilitation center that neglected the victim, and auto manufacturer responsible for the car’s defect.
Case: “Doe” v. Propane Company
One morning after a snowstorm, Mr. Doe went to his shop to work on several projects. He opened the door and turned on the thermostat.
Within minutes, an explosion occurred. The shop went up in flames.
Doe escaped through a side door, but he was badly burned. He was transported to a local hospital and then to the burn clinic at Harborview Medical Center. The shop and everything in it had extensive damage.
Investigators figured out that the cause of the fire was a propane tank leaking gas.
The law requires that gas piping be installed at a minimum depth, and that the piping be properly supported. In this case, the propane tank’s pipes were incorrectly installed.
Heavy snow had moved the piping and caused a link. The gas seeped into the shop. When the furnace was turned on, the gas ignited.
Doe had no notice that the piping was incorrectly installed, or that he was in danger.
Contact Coluccio Law