Burn Injuries in the Auto Industry
Chicago Lawyers for Workers’ Compensation Claims
According to the National Institutes of Health, around 40% of all burn deaths are linked to job fires and explosions. Workplace burn injuries constitute a significant percentage of all burn injuries around the country, and many thousands are hospitalized for burn injuries. If you have suffered burn injuries while working in the auto industry, a skillful Chicago workers’ compensation attorney can evaluate your claim for benefits. Although the workers’ compensation system was designed to make it easier for injured workers to obtain wage replacement and money for medical bills, in practice, it can be challenging for a worker to secure the benefits he or she needs from an insurer trying to protect profits.
Burn Injuries in the Auto Industry
Burn injuries can be sustained in the auto industry as the result of a motor vehicle accident, flammable fuel spills or explosions, scalding liquids, electricity accidents, structural fires, defective candles, defective starters such as lighters, defective equipment, or industrial accidents.
The burn injuries that can arise as a result of these various types of accidents are electrical burns, chemical burns, and thermal burns. An electric burn can be triggered by contact with a direct current or alternating current through electrified water or an electrical socket. Chemical burns occur when body tissues, whether in the eyes or the skin or the ears, contact corrosive substances or compounds that are commonly used in the auto industry. Thermal burns can be caused by an auto worker making contact with a flame, boiling liquid, or steam, or by touching a burning hot object, like a car engine.
Types of Burn Injuries
Burn injuries come in four degrees. The least serious are first degree burns. These only impact the outermost layer of skin. They can trigger swelling, redness, or pain. Second degree burns impact the outer and underlying layer of skin and may cause blistering, swelling, redness and pain. Third degree burns go deeper into tissue and may look like white or charred skin. There may be numbness with third degree burns. Fourth degree burns are the most severe and they can involve damage to muscles, tendons, or even bone.
Often those who suffer burns on the job need emergency care. You should seek out emergency care immediately if you’ve been burned while working in the auto industry. You may also need more specialized medical care. Sometimes plastic or reconstructive surgery is necessary. Often, after going through an accident that gives rise to serious burns, a worker suffers trauma. He or she may also experience emotional anguish connected to disfigurement and scarring. Sometimes more psychological injuries manifest further down the road. A dedicated work injury lawyer can help you navigate the system for pursuing benefits for this type of harm.
The range of types of burns and scarring that are possible following a burn injury at work means that what benefits will be available can be different. The benefits available for first degree burns will necessarily be different than those available for third or fourth degree burns. Fourth degree burns may be fatal, which means that an auto worker with fourth degree burns may pass away, and his or her family may be eligible for death benefits.
Medical benefits can be significant in burn injury cases. Any emergency care should be covered by workers’ compensation. The severity if the burn and its location may affect the amount of the overall benefits. If you are not disabled from working, you may be offered a lump sum settlement for the burn or scars arising from the burns. Generally, facial disfigurement or scarring is considered more severe than the scarring that results from burns on limbs.
Consult an Experienced Chicago Attorney to Make a Workers’ Compensation Claim
Insurers may dispute the amount of benefits you seek after a work injury. It is advisable to hire a knowledgeable workers’ compensation lawyer if you have suffered burn injuries in the auto industry in Chicago. At Katz, Friedman, Eisenstein, Johnson, Bareck & Bertuca, we represent injured workers in Quincy, Aurora, Rockford, Springfield, and Champaign, as well as Kane County, Cook County, Sangamon County, Winnebago County, and Adams County. We can also determine whether it’s appropriate to pursue damages in a wrongful death lawsuit or other personal injury action. Contact us toll-free at 312-724-5846, or via our online form.