Columbia Explosion Injury Lawyers
Fires and explosions are traumatic incidents that can cause serious injuries and fatalities. For those who survive an explosion, the effects can last a lifetime. Those injured in these types of events often incur very high medical costs and miss several days, weeks, or even months from work during the recovery process. In many cases, victims end up with debilitating injuries that make them unable to go back to their previous jobs. If you or someone close to you was seriously injured in an explosion accident and another party was responsible, you have a right to be compensated. Before accepting any type of settlement offer from an insurance company, it is important to speak with an experienced personal injury attorney.
For almost 20 years, the attorneys at Peake & Fowler have represented clients who have suffered explosion injuries and all other types of personal injury in South Carolina. Our lawyers have extensive knowledge of this area of the law, and we have a successful track record with even the most complex cases. We routinely go up against well-funded adversaries such as the big insurance companies, and we have the experience, skills, knowledge and commitment to aggressively pursue full and fair compensation for our clients, and to help ensure that those responsible for their injuries are held fully accountable.
Types of Explosion Injuries
There are four general ways individuals can be injured by a blast or explosion:
- Primary Blast Injuries: These are injuries that happen because of the direct impact of the pressure of the blast. When the blast pressure wave strikes the surface of the body, it can cause a wide range of injuries. Examples include instant lung damage (from rapid or excessive changes in pressure), damages to internal organs (such as the intestines or gall bladder), ruptured eyes and eardrums, and traumatic brain injury (TBI).
- Secondary Blast Injuries: Explosions can cause materials, objects and debris to be dispersed from the site of the blast. Secondary blast injuries occur when these rapidly moving materials, objects, and debris strike individuals nearby. The impact of being struck can cause all types of trauma injuries, as well as skin penetration.
- Tertiary Blast Injuries: Individuals nearby an explosion are not only impacted by the objects they might be struck by, they can also be thrown by the blast wind. If someone is picked up and thrown a significant distance, they can end up with very severe injuries. Examples may include broken bones/fractures, traumatic amputations, and head/brain injuries.
- Quaternary Blast Injuries: These are explosion injuries that are not considered primary, secondary, or tertiary. Examples may include burn injuries, crush injuries, angina, and asthma or COPD due to excessive inhalation of dust, smoke, or toxic fumes.
Accidents that Cause Explosion Injuries
Explosions can occur just about anywhere, but there are certain factors and circumstances that increase the likelihood of a blast or explosion. Here are some common accidents that can result in explosion injuries:
- Steam Explosions
- Chemical Explosions
- Mining Explosions
- Oil and Gas Drilling Explosions
- Electrical Explosions
- Fuel Tank Explosions after Car Accidents
- Power Plant Explosions
- Building Explosions
- Acts of Violence
Injuries from explosions can vary in severity. Generally, the closer an individual is to the center of the blast, the more likely they are to sustain a serious injury. Explosion injuries are not always physical in nature, however. A person can experience psychological trauma from witnessing an explosion, and particularly when they see someone else get killed or seriously hurt from the blast.
Damages for Explosion Injuries in South Carolina
As mentioned previously, blasts and explosions can result in serious and catastrophic injuries. Victims typically face a long road to recovery, and many explosion injuries are debilitating and render the victim unable to go back to their previous job and/or participate in any other type of gainful activity. These injuries can be hard on other members of the household as well. Loved ones are often thrust into a caregiving role, which can be stressful on everyone involved.
If the explosion injury occurs at work, the first step is for the injured party to file a workers’ compensation claim. Workers’ comp is a no-fault system, meaning you can recover compensation regardless of who was at fault (with some exceptions) for your medical bills, a percentage of lost wages, and permanent disability. In such cases, you are generally not allowed to file a personal injury lawsuit against your employer.
If you suffered a work-related injury that was the fault of a third party, or you were injured in an explosion accident outside of work, you may be able to recover damages from the party responsible. This is usually accomplished through a settlement with the other party’s insurer, or through personal injury litigation if the other party is not willing to negotiate in good faith.
Compensatory damages for explosion injuries can be divided into two general categories:
- Economic Damages: These are damages that can be quantified, such as costs for hospitalization, treatment, surgery, rehabilitation, ongoing medical care, loss of earnings, loss of earning capacity, and funeral and burial costs. If any personal property was damaged because of the explosion (such as your automobile), you have a right to be compensated for that as well.
- Non-Economic Damages: These are damages that are intangible and not as easy to assign a dollar figure to. Examples include physical pain and suffering, emotional distress, loss of enjoyment, and loss of consortium.
In rare cases in which the actions of the responsible party were especially egregious, punitive damages may be awarded to “punish” the party that caused the explosion and help deter them (and others) from similarly egregious behavior in the future.
Speak with a Compassionate South Carolina Personal Injury Attorney
At Peake & Fowler, we understand that individuals who suffer explosion injuries and other kinds of severe personal injury have to endure untold physical, emotional, and financial pain. Our goal is to make the legal process smooth and seamless, so you can focus on your recovery. We work closely with our clients through each step of the process, providing strong legal guidance and moral support during this difficult time. We also accept all personal injury cases on a contingency basis, so you never have to pay upfront attorney fees to receive the skilled and personalized representation you need and deserve. For a free consultation with one of our attorneys, call our office today at 803-788-4370. You may also send us a message through our online contact form.