According to the American Burn Association, there are more than 40,000 hospitalizations each year due to burns. The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) has employer standards for maintaining a burn-free workplace. When accidents happen or employers neglect these regulations, employees suffer the consequences.
It is vital employers share OSHA safety guidelines with their employees and make employees aware of company safety policies. It is also imperative employees know what to do in the event of a burn injury at work.
The following is an outline of safety and documentation procedures for employees to follow should they suffer a workplace burn. It is only a guide and is no substitute for professional medical or legal advice.
Types of Workplace Burn Injuries
The most cited workplace burn injuries by the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) are thermal burns, chemical burns, and electrical burns. Thermal burns result from exposure to:
- Hot liquids or steam;
- Hot surfaces;
- Flames; and
Chemical burns are due to contact with flesh-eating substances. Electrical burns are caused by an electrical current meeting resistance when traveling through the body.
Thermal burns are the most common workplace burn. Our team of catastrophic injury lawyers in Louisville specialize in handling these types of workplace burn injuries.
Treating a Burn Injury at Work
Victims of a burn injury at work should immediately seek medical care. Burns may be flushed with cool water for ten to fifteen minutes unless they are electrical burns. Then, they may be covered with a clean, dry dressing.
Burn injuries should not be:
- Treated with ice water, butter, ointments, or sprays;
- Touched with anything except a clean, dry covering;
- Cleaned or have any blistered broken; or
- Cleared of stuck-on clothes or other material.
The manager, owner, or supervisor on duty needs to be notified of the injury as soon as possible.
Reporting and Documenting a Burn Injury at Work
Reporting and documenting a burn injury is vital for injured workers. This ensures the payment of any available workers’ compensation insurance. It is also the foundation of a personal injury claim against their employer or another party for negligence or recklessness at the workplace.
Documentation of a Burn Injury at Work
Documentation of a burn injury is a written record or log kept from the day of an accident up to the present time.
It includes the following types of information:
- The date and time of the injury;
- The type of injury;
- Any potential causes of the injury;
- Who saw the injury;
- Who the injury was reported to;
- The medical care received;
- A copy of any work accident report;
- Injury photos;
- Site photos;
- An account of how the injury has affected daily living; and
- Copies of medical records, prescriptions, and billing statements.
An experienced Louisville burn injury attorney can review this information and advise a victim of available legal options and possible compensation outside of workers’ compensation for their pain and suffering and other losses.
Contact an Experienced Burn Injury Attorney in Louisville Today
If you or your loved one suffered a burn injury at work, contact the Louisville personal injury lawyers at Dolt, Thompson, Shepherd & Conway, PSC. We are experienced in Kentucky burn injury claims and can review your situation at no cost to you.
Dolt, Thompson, Shepherd & Conway, PSC, holds employers responsible who place profits ahead of worker safety. We have recovered more than $500 million for our clients. Find out more about our services today.