Injuries and Fatalities in Gun AccidentsA gun accident caused by an improperly stored gun can easily lead to severe injuries or even end in a fatality. Some of the injuries that commonly stem from these accidents include:
- Injuries to limbs
- Injuries to the chest and stomach area
- Facial wounds, including damage to eyes and ears
- Scars and disfigurement
- Hand injuries
When is a Gun Owner Responsible for an Accident?Depending on the circumstances of the accident, a Kentucky gun owner can be held liable for a gun accident on both criminal and civil charges. Though Kentucky is seen as one of the more lenient states when it comes to gun laws, claims are still taken seriously when somebody is injured or a life is taken in a preventable gun accident. When a gun owner’s negligence causes an accident or unintentional shooting that leads to injuries or a fatality, they could be responsible for the damages that result. Examples of gun owner negligence include the following scenarios:
- Failing to Safely Store a Gun: A leading cause of gun-related accidents each year is an accident caused by failing to properly store a gun. One of a gun owner’s responsibilities includes making sure that their firearms are stored away from unauthorized users, which includes children. When a child or another party is naturally curious about a gun, they could pick up the weapon without realizing that there is a danger there. A gun owner is supposed to use safes, lockboxes, or trigger locks when they are storing their firearms as a way to keep children and others safe from harm.
- Failing to Properly Maintain Gun: A gun owner should always regularly maintain their firearms, which includes servicing and cleaning it. If a gun is not properly maintained, it could misfire or jam. This can even lead to an explosion in the most severe cases. If somebody is injured due to a malfunctioning firearm, the gun owner could be held liable for the resulting damages.
- Recklessly Handling Weapon: If a gun owner disregards the safety of others in an incredibly reckless manner, they could be responsible for any resulting damages. Reckless handling of a weapon includes aspects like waving around a loaded gun, “showing off” a weapon without checking safety measures first, or using a firearm while under the influence.
Damages Available in Kentucky Gun Accident CasesIf you or someone you know has been hurt or a life has been taken due to a gun owner’s negligence, financial support may be available. Common damages that are seen in these cases include:
- Medical expenses that cover all healthcare costs associated with a victim’s injuries
- Lost wages due to missed time at work caused by gun-related injuries
- Pain and suffering for physical pain and emotional distress
- Punitive damages if a gun owner’s behavior was especially reckless and it led to an accident
- Wrongful death damages for the deceased’s family, which include funeral expenses, loss of consortium, loss of income, and more