Mar 2022

How Common Are Workplace Burn Injuries?

Bandage for burn injury

One of the most common and most serious workplace injuries someone can sustain is a burn injury, according to a medical study conducted by doctors who regularly treat burn injury victims.

In an instant, someone can sustain a serious burn at work. Such injuries often require immediate medical care, including emergency medical treatment. Such work-related injury expenses are often covered by workers’ compensation. But actually obtaining such benefits can often be challenging.

So how bad is the problem? How common are workplace burn injuries? And why do these accidents happen on the job? Below, you can learn more about burn injuries sustained at work and the legal options available to injury victims.

How common are workplace burn injuries?

Overall, people sustain more than 5,000 burn injuries each year, according to statistics compiled by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA). Of these burn injury victims, more than 60 people die each year on average due to work-related burn injuries, according to the National Census of Fatal Occupational Injuries.

Based on such statistics, work-related burn injuries account for 40 percent of all burn-related deaths, according to the medical study published by the National Center for Biotechnology Information (NCBI). The study was conducted by doctors and medical researchers who treat people for burn injuries.

Another study cited by researchers reported that burn injuries accounted for 42 percent of all work-related injuries. As a result, burn injuries are one of the most common on-the-job injuries.

Causes of on-the-job burn injuries

Work-related burn injuries happen for many different reasons. The most common causes include:

  • Burn injuries caused by fires
  • Electrical burns
  • Burn injuries caused by explosions
  • Scalding burns caused by hot liquids
  • Chemical burns caused by gasoline, paint thinner, cleaners, and other substances

What some people might not realize is many work-related burn injuries occur due to negligence or mistakes made by employers that result in unsafe working conditions. Examples include:

  • Not providing workers with protective safety equipment
  • Failing to train workers how to safely operate equipment
  • Not properly maintaining equipment, resulting in an accident
  • Inexperienced workers causing an accident that results in a burn injury

Who is most at risk of suffering a burn injury at work?

Certain workers and industries sustain more burn injuries than others. Men sustain 90 percent of burn injuries, according to one study cited by the doctors who treat burn injury patients. In addition, younger men are more likely to sustain a work-related burn injury. One study found that men between the ages of 25 and 34 sustained the most work-related burn injuries, followed by men between the ages of 35 and 44.

As for particular employers, 29 percent of work-related burn injuries involve people working in the manufacturing industry sector. Restaurant workers sustained the second-most work-related burn injuries at 15 percent, followed by electrical workers (15 percent of work-related burn injuries), automotive workers (13 percent), construction workers (10 percent), and chemical plant workers (9 percent).

Talk to a burn injury attorney today

You might think you don’t need an attorney if you or a loved one sustained a burn injury at work. Such injuries are often covered by workers’ compensation. A type of insurance, workers’ compensation should provide injured or sick workers with money for medical expenses and replacement income.

However, actually obtaining workers’ compensation benefits can be very difficult. And depending on the circumstances of your work-related accident, you may be eligible for additional financial compensation.

The experienced workers’ compensation lawyers at the Law Offices of Deborah G. Kohl can help you explore all the legal options available to you. Contact us and schedule a free case evaluation with a workers’ compensation attorney who knows how to skillfully handle such complicated legal cases. We have three offices conveniently located in Rhode Island and Massachusetts and handle workers’ compensation claims in both states.

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