Car Fire, Deep Burns and Amputation

Our accident lawyers represent burn victims, but lawyer-client confidentiality prevents us from discussing any of our cases in detail. However, we believe it is important for drivers to hear about severe injuries that can be caused by negligent driving. A recent article in The New England Journal of Medicine* reports on burns caused in an accident where the car burst into flames.

A 16-year-old girl was trapped in a burning car for 10 minutes before a passersby extracted her. Thanks to these brave people, she lived, but her injuries were so severe that her life will never be the same.

The car fire victim suffered deep burns and “life-threatening and limb-threatening compartment syndromes”, edema (swelling from blood in this case) of certain limb areas, including muscle, that do not stretch.  All of her limbs and her torso were severely burned. She also suffered inhalation injury.

Flesh that is burned is dead and can’t grow back. This poor child had necrotic (dead) burned skin, fat and muscle. These had to be cut off and closed with autograft, skin and other tissue, removed from one area of the body to the burned area. The pain involved with this is incomprehensible. Once you hear the screams in a burn unit, you will never forget them.

Tragically, fourth-degree burns on her legs and one hand were so bad that the limbs could not be saved. Both of her legs were amputated below the knee and most of her right had was also amputated. Read about an auto accident amputation lawsuit.

Car accident fires are most often the result of an impact that ignites the fire. In some cases, a defective auto part or defective overall design of the car causes a fire. In all of these cases, it is absolutely critical to hire an attorney with this exact experience to do an independent investigation of the accident and take measures to protect the burn victim’s legal rights. The medical expenses, pain and suffering, emotional distress are all off the charts with these cases, and the victims and their families need all of the financial help they can get.

There are cases where immediate action to preserve evidence must be taken. For example, if an 18-wheeler or other commercial truck is involved in your accident, your attorney needs to send a spoliation letter as soon as possible. This letter tells the trucking company that they can’t destroy or manipulate evidence.  If this is not done, the company, by law, can destroy some evidence a few months after the accident.

Attorneys Fred Pritzker and Eric Hageman are lead lawyers on our Accident Law Team. You can contact them for a free consultation HERE and discuss you case with no obligation. These cases are expensive to litigate.  Because of our past successes, we have the resources to represent you, and we are not paid unless we win your case.

*Sheridan et al., Recovery of a 16-Year-Old Girl from Trauma and Burns after a Car Accident, The New England Journal of Medicine, 2012, vol. 361, no. 21, 2027-31.

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