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Illinois Personal Injury

What To Do If You’ve Been Badly Burned at Work

In our society, safety precautions are mandated in the workplace to protect employees. We all hope, and most expect, to be safe at work. While some jobs are inherently more dangerous than others, accidents can happen in any workplace.

Burns need medical attention right away. Even what appears to be a mild burn, such as from an electrical shock, can cause internal damage to deep tissues. A splatter of oil can lead to blistering, swelling, and pain that makes it impossible for you to do your job for weeks on end.

Severe burns need immediate attention

Severe burns may have catastrophic consequences. A severe burn requires immediate medical attention. Coworkers of a burn injury should take immediate action. One person should be designated to dial 911, while others care for the victim.

Care for the victim needs to be specific to the injury

Possible care may include:

  • Immediate removal of jewelry may be necessary as burn victims often begin to swell shortly after the accident.
  • Clothing may need to be removed to care for the burned area, however, it is important to cut around any clothing that is stuck to the skin. Never rip clothing from the skin, as the skin may rip off with it.
  • If possible, elevate the burned area higher than the victim’s head.
  • Apply cool, damp cloths or towels to the burned area.
  • If the victim is in shock, lie the victim flat and raise their feet twelve inches while you wait for emergency personnel to arrive.

What to do after receiving medical attention

After you have received medical attention and are released from the hospital, recognize that recovering from a severe burn takes time. Pain, swelling, blistering, and other complications can last long after the accident. Often, a series of medical procedures must proceed to help you recover.

You will need to take time off work after a severe burn. This can be weeks or months. In some cases, it is never appropriate for you to return to the same line of work.

Who is to blame for your injury?

Unless your employer was grossly negligent, work injury claims are handled through Workman’s Compensation. Employers carry this insurance so that they are not personally responsible for compensating you for your injury.

It is important to file a Worker’s Compensation claim at once after the injury, or as soon as possible after receiving medical treatment. Not filing promptly may raise suspicion as to whether your injury actually happened at work.

At times, other parties may be to blame. They may include:

  • Manufacturers providing faulty equipment
  • Sub-contractors or vendors who have been negligent
  • An at-fault driver in the case of a work-related motor vehicle accident

Hiring a personal injury attorney

Workman’s Compensation companies are professionals. They will try to minimize their liability by conducting investigations in their favor. They may try to get you to settle for less than full compensation just to have the case over with.

A personal injury attorney will do the investigations and legal work on your behalf so you can focus on your recovery. They are well versed in the legal system and understand how to make sure you get the compensation you deserve, whether through Workman’s Comp, a responsible third party, or both.