At Arnold & Itkin, we've worked extensively in the area of offshore injuries. We represent seamen, harbor workers, longshoreman, and others in this field who have suffered in an on-the-job accident. Offshore occupations possess a number of potential dangers; these can be intensified when safety precautions are inadequate. For those hurt in an accident, there are a number of serious outcomes that can result. As a profession that often involves strenuous labor and rough conditions, many workers face physical harm that can debilitate them for any length of time.
One injury that may result from an unfortunate incident involves a burn. A burn injury can be sustained from a number of sources. It can be from chemicals, radiation, friction, heat, or electricity. With the risk that is involved working on an oil rig including the chance of explosion, burn injuries are a reality for many. Regardless of the source, the damage can be classified into one of four categories; a first degree burn to a fourth degree burn.
A first degree burn is the first stage and this will be for incidents that cause less damage. While it is the least detrimental stage, it can still be very painful. It is often characterized by a reddening and drying of the skin. The damage occurs to the outer layer of skin, known as the epidermis. For those that suffer this type, it will take around a week to heal. A common example is a sunburn and those that have a first degree burn can have an increased chance of sustaining skin cancer further down the road in their life.
Second degree burns come in two categories. The first is known as a superficial partial thickness burn and this will go through the epidermis to the superficial dermis layer. It will often be present with a reddening and blistering of the skin, as well as blanching when pressure is applied to the skin. Most often it takes two to three weeks for a recovery to be made, although some individuals may sustain an infection that can cause the recovery period to be extended. The other type of a second degree burn is a deep partial thickness burn. This moves down through the deep dermis layer and will result in bloody blistering of the skin. It can take a number weeks until it is healed and it may leave scarring.
This is not true with a third degree burn, which will more often be painless. The skin can become dry, leathery in texture, and charred looking. The damage will go completely through the dermis layer, damaging the nerves below. This is the reason victims can sometimes feel no pain from it initially. Since circulation can be cut off, it may result in the need for amputation when the area is no longer functioning or able to be saved.
A fourth degree burn is the most serious type and the burn will go through completely through the skin and fatty layer to the muscle and bone beneath. The skin can become dry, blackened and charred looking. This will typically be painless due to the nerve damage that results and there is likely the need for excision and possible amputation. A fourth degree burn can also lead to gangrene, impairments or even a wrongful death.
Some burns may only need to be cooled and cleaned to reduce inflammation and reduce the risk of infection. Oral antibiotics may also be prescribed to degrease the chance of infection or cure it if it has already developed. The wound may need to be dressed and a cream applied beneath gauze to help speed up the healing process.
The skin that has been damaged may require excision and when gangrene develops or the area is burned significantly enough, it may be necessary to amputate. It is not necessary to seek medical treatment for every kind of burn, but it should be sought when a significant portion of body is burned, a more sensitive area such as the face is harmed, the condition worsens, it is life threatening, infection develops or other serious factors are involved. Since these can lead to scarring it is important to treat the area effectively to reduce this risk.
Burn injuries cost around $7.5 billion every year and for those that have been harmed by another person's carelessness, you should not be left paying this expense in addition to the pain you have already had to endure. Whether you have dealt with a second or fourth degree burn, there can be numerous side effects. About one billion of the yearly expense is allocated to hospitalizations and many victims require emergency treatment or ongoing treatment. For families that have lost their loved one, a wrongful death case may also be pursued and we can be a strong advocate during this difficult time. Our team has earned countless injured parties the compensation they deserve and our offshore injury lawyer will seek to do the same for you.
Our commitment is that if we don't make a recovery, we will not charge you a fee.
Arnold & Itkin represented nearly a third of the crewmembers injured in the Deepwater Horizon explosion.
Because maritime law is so complex and so complicated, it is crucial that you work with an attorney who has an in-depth understanding of how it works and who has proven themselves in similar cases before.