When you live in Kentucky, a burn injury is an ever-present danger. Whether it be through a car accident, an accident at work, exposure to chemicals, or simply burning yourself on something in your house, burns and their resulting injuries have serious implications for you and your loved ones.
According to data from the Kentucky Injury Prevention and Research Center, there were 23,210 injury-related hospitalizations and 455,997 emergency room visits among Kentucky residents in 2019. Not all of these visits were for burn injuries, but a significant number of them resulted from accidents that can frequently cause burn injuries.
When suffering a burn injury, your immediate focus is on recovery. However, burn injuries present unique challenges that typically involve a substantial, expensive recovery process that can put a huge burden on you and your family.
Support From Experienced Kentucky Burn Injury Lawyers
You shouldn’t have to face the burden of a burn injury alone. At Kaufman & Stigger, we believe that every client deserves support and guidance through every step of this difficult process. Our team of experienced and resourceful Kentucky burn injury lawyers can provide our services and support to you so that you can focus on your health and recovery.
To get started with a free consultation, contact us today.
Burn Injury Data Nationwide and in Kentucky
Because burn injuries are often so serious, extensive research and data collection goes into cataloging and reporting these injuries. Further, most people think burn injuries only occur from fires or open flames. While these burns do make up a significant portion of injuries, scalding burns, chemical burns, and electrical burns also cause significant injuries.
Due to the causes being so widespread, the American Burn Association compiled data from the National Burn Repository and found the following:
- Nearly 97% survive their burn injuries
- About 39% suffered burn injuries over 10% of their body area
- Fires or open flames caused 41% of the injuries
- Scald burns accounted for 33% of all burn-related injuries
- Approximately 9% of burn injury cases involved contact with heat or hot objects
- Nearly 3% of all severe burn injuries were caused by electricity
- Approximately 3% of all burns involved chemical exposure
- More than 90% of adults and children visiting emergency rooms for burn and fire injuries are treated and released
- Approximately 74% of all burn injuries occurred in accidents that were non-work related, while 14% of burn injuries occurred in work-related accidents.
As it relates to Kentucky, burn injuries are also extremely problematic. This is due to the fact that Kentucky has a wide variety of different industries that pose burn injury risks, on top of normal circumstances where burn injuries happen, like car accidents or scalding burns from hot liquids.
The Kentucky Injury Prevention and Research Center’s 2020 report found that there were:
- 13 work-related burn injuries that resulted in hospitalization in 2019.
- 12 work-related burn injuries that resulted in hospitalization in 2020.
What this data shows is that even if burn injuries aren’t especially common or prevalent, they still can occur almost anywhere in Kentucky. Not only that, but the effects and implications that come with burn injuries can last much longer than after the initial incident that caused the injury.
Common Types of Kentucky Burn Injuries
Because they can occur virtually anywhere at any time in Kentucky, burn injuries can range in severity. Still, there are common types of burn injuries, usually including the following:
- Thermal Burns – Thermal burns are burns that are caused by open flames. The above data shows that most burn injuries are thermal burns. These burns raise the temperature of the skin and tissue and can char the skin in severe cases. Virtually any open flame or heated object can cause a thermal burn.
- Scalding Burns – Scalding burns occur when steam or an extremely hot liquid contacts your skin. While a vast majority of these types of burns happen to children and elderly people, everyone is susceptible to these burns because they usually occur within the home. Scalding burns and the treatment associated with them are extremely painful, and are usually caused by heated water or liquids heated on a stove or oven.
- Electrical Burns – An electrical burn happens when the electricity comes in contact with your body or skin, and the resulting contact leaves a burn. The severity of the burn usually depends on the level of voltage that the contact has. Electrical burns can be caused by open wires or electrical outlets.
- Chemical Burns – Chemical burns, also known as “caustic” burns, occur when you come in contact with harsh or corrosive substances and the resulting chemical reaction burns your skin. These burns are extremely dangerous, as they usually involve extensive damage to your internal organs and nerves below the skin. Most chemical burns happen at work, especially if the occupation involves working with commercial chemicals.
Obviously, different types of burns can happen in different scenarios. Worse yet, you can suffer more than one type of burn injury in a particular incident, especially in cases like car accidents, where you are exposed to elements that cause each type of burn.
Can Burn Injuries Be Prevented in Kentucky?
Given the danger of burn injuries, you may be wondering if they are preventable. The answer to this question is, unfortunately, no. No injury is entirely preventable. However, the good thing about burn injuries is that with the right strategy, they are largely preventable.
As the data above demonstrates, most burn injuries occur in the home. And of those burn injuries, thermal and scalding burn injuries are the most frequent. With that in mind, there are several ways in which you can reduce the risk of a burn injury:
- Make sure you have smoke detectors installed on every floor of your home, especially in the kitchen or where there is a heater.
- Be careful when using stoves, ovens, and microwaves, watching your children closely when they are near these items.
- Monitor home water temperatures, checking your water heater’s thermostat. It’s usually recommended to keep the setting at around 120 degrees Fahrenheit.
- Keep a fire extinguisher in the kitchen in case of oven fires.
- Always turn pot handles toward the back of the stove so children can’t reach them.
- Unplug your kitchen and other heating appliances when not in use.
- Check bath temperatures before allowing children to touch the water.
- Get rid of any appliances that have frayed or damaged cords.
- Don’t overload electrical outlets.
- Clean dryer vents regularly to prevent lint build-up that can catch fire.
Again, there is no way to totally prevent a burn injury. But following these steps and tips will put you in the best position to make sure a burn injury only occurs due to circumstances outside of your control.
Work With a Compassionate Kentucky Burn Injury Lawyer
A burn injury is among the worst that a victim can suffer. Not only because of the intense pain they can cause, but also because they require a huge undertaking in terms of treatment and rehabilitation. But more than that, they can take away your sense of safety and can literally alter the way you look and function.
If you have suffered a burn injury in Kentucky, you need a compassionate and dedicated burn injury lawyer on your side to make sure you get the support you need. At Kaufman & Stigger, our Kentucky burn injury lawyers will support you every step of the way. To get started, contact us today for a free consultation.