Worker Injured in Warehouse Explosion Settles for $1.3 Million


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The man, an electrical contractor, suffered these injuries while replacing a fire suppression system.

An electrical contractor, who suffered serious burn injuries in a warehouse blast, has agreed to settle his lawsuit for $1.3 million. The incident occurred in 2012 when the worker was replacing a component on a fire suppression system when he suddenly became engulfed in flames. The man suffered third-degree burn injuries to about 36 percent of his body including his legs, arms, hands, face,
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neck and back. If you or a loved one has fallen victim to a tragic workplace accident, such as this one, then it is important that you contact an experienced workers’ compensation lawyer to help you understand your legal rights.

Did the Victim File a Third Party Lawsuit?

The report also states that before the accident, a sprinkler contractor had inspected the system and found extensive corrosion and water damage. However, no one had notified the worker of the deficiencies. In addition to the company in whose premises he was working at the time, the worker also sued two other firms, which each owned 50 percent of the warehouse and were responsible for roof maintenance under the lease terms. He also sued the company that performed the sprinkler inspection before the accident and the sprinkler company that was performing work on the system at the time of the accident.

How Serious Are Third Degree Burns?

Third-degree burns are among the most serious types of burn injuries. They are often caused by a scalding liquid, skin that comes in contact with a hot object for an extended period of time, flames from a fire, an electrical source or a chemical source. Some of the common symptoms of a full thickness, third-degree burn include dry and leathery skin; black, white, brown or yellow skin; swelling; and lack of pain because nerve endings have been destroyed. Third-degree burns heal slowly and poorly without medical attention. Victims may need painful and costly skin graft surgery because new skin will not grow in areas where the epidermis and hair follicles are destroyed.

What Should I Do after Sustaining a Work-Related Injury?

If you have been seriously injured in a work-related accident in Rhode Island, there are several steps you would be well advised to take in order to protect your legal rights. First, be sure to report the incident as soon as possible to your employer and/or supervisor, and obtain a copy of the report for your records. Get prompt medical attention, treatment and care for your injuries. File a workers’ compensation claim, which will help pay for medical expenses and a portion of lost wages.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Paul d’Oliveira
Attorney Paul d’Oliveira has been practicing personal injury and disability law for over 29 years. He started his personal injury law practice in 1989 with two offices in Fall River, MA and East Providence, RI. Today his firm has 15 offices in RI and Southeastern, MA.

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Disclaimer: While every effort has been made to ensure the accuracy of this publication, it is not intended to provide legal advice as individual situations will differ and should be discussed with an expert and/or lawyer. For specific technical or legal advice on the information provided and related topics, please contact the author.

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