Kitchen accidents happen whether you’re a professional or a home cook. There’s a learning curve to using some equipment – especially in a commercial kitchen. But what can you do when one of your tools is the root cause of your injury? And what happens when the “tool” is a product found in almost every kitchen in America?
There have been 33 lawsuits filed on behalf of professional cooks and kitchen staff around the country against ConAgra, the manufacturer of Pam cooking spray. The cans have exploded under various scenarios leaving users severely injured. It turns out that the propellant contents – propane and butane – ignited, causing a fireball effect.
It appears that the trouble resulted from a design flaw in ConAgra’s commercial cooking sprays. The cans, sold mostly to restaurants, were vented in the bottom, which has been remedied. Additionally, a warning label has been added to keep the can away from heat. That doesn’t mean that all of these cans have been pulled from the market, or kitchens across the country.
Some of the victims suffered include serious third-degree burn injuries, disfigurement, and blindness. At least one victim was placed into a medically induced coma while another required a skin graft. Others have experienced scarring on their extremities, neck, and face, along with their hair being burned off.
Burn injuries can have a complicated healing process
Depending upon the severity of the burn you sustain, it may take months to heal, if ever. There are various stages of repair that your body will go through and how you initially react to the burn may affect that. For instance, placing ice on a burn may minimize the pain, but it will also slow down the healing process. All burn wounds should be kept bandaged to minimize the likelihood of infection setting in, but cotton balls or pads should never be used on burns, because they can increase the chance of infection.
The simple solution is to seek medical attention if you have sustained a severe burn injury, rather than try to address the injury on your own.
- First degree burns. These injuries are to the surface layers of your skin and typically take minimal care to completely heal. Typically, treatment amounts to running the area under cold water then applying antibiotic cream.
- Second degree burns. This type of burn reaches beneath the top skin layer to cause significant blistering. Treatment is similar to that of first degree burns unless your injuries are to larger skin areas, posing a greater health threat. Repairing more serious burn damage could require use of skin grafts surgically removed from other areas of your body to replace the burn damage.
- Third degree burns. This burn goes deep beneath skin tissue and can destroy nerves. Most patients will suffer permanent scarring, though it may be minimized with proper care. These burns require immediate professional medical care due to complications that can arise of shock, blood loss, or death.
- Fourth degree burns. These burns are third degree burns with added damage to tendons and bones. They are often fatal.
Burn injuries are horrific, and can have long-term effects. The pain doesn’t end with the burns finally healing. Victims can experience a lifetime of discomfort, disfigurement, and even inability to move without substantial physical therapy.
The Minot burn injury attorneys at Larson Law Firm, P.C. care about you and your recovery. We understand that burn injuries can be timely and costly to heal, and that you may be entitled to compensation to assist you. To schedule your free consultation in our Bismarck or Minot offices, call us today at 701-484-4878, or reach out to us through our contact page to tell us your story.