Over the last few years, it has been heartbreaking to see fellow California resident’s lives transformed by wildfires ravaging our state. These fire outbreaks relentlessly claim the lives and homes of our neighbors blindly. For some, it is a total loss. It is horrible to think that some of these fires and resulting devastation could have been prevented.
If you have recently experienced a loss or injury as a result of the California wildfires, our attorneys may be able to help.
Accidents as a Result of Emergency Evacuations
Emergency evacuations are frantic. Everyone is in a panic to seek safety. The risk of harm happens when you are asked to evacuate in a way that is not secure or does not lead you out of danger. In some cases, emergency situations not handled properly create an opportunity for chaos and put others at risk. In these situations, others may be liable for further injuries that occur.
Fires as a Result of Negligence
Fires that are caused by the negligence of another person or organization can also result in the potential for a claim. These situations are often the result of improper electrical equipment or installations, product recalls, or participating in an activity that is banned in the area like bonfires or smoking. In these cases, the other’s negligence and carelessness put others at risk, making them liable for the injuries that were endured.
Accidents as a Result of Faulty Smoke Detectors
While they typically do not apply in the case of wildfires, smoke alarms are always an important topic when we talk about fire safety, in general. We see a lot of people injured during house fires. Smoke detectors are a vital safety measure put in place to ensure that you are aware of the threat around you and can take action. A faulty smoke detector could result in others being liable for the injuries you experience. In other circumstances, it is a landlord’s responsibility to ensure smoke alarms are working in the building. Without the proper notice that a fire is in close proximity, you or your loved ones are at risk for being in a serious, life-threatening situation.
What to Do if You’ve Been Injured
If you have been injured during your wildfire evacuation, seek medical attention immediately.
After you have addressed your immediate injuries, you will want to document the injuries you have sustained. Here’s what you should do – photograph the injuries, document medical evidence, and when possible, in a safe and controlled environment, photograph the physical evidence which led to the accident. Your safety, and the safety of those around you should always be your first priority. Wildfires affect thousands of people in different ways, and it is of the utmost importance to respect the wishes of first responders and mandatory evacuations. If you believe your injuries may have occurred as a result of negligence, call Alison Gokal and the personal injury attorneys at Gokal Law Group. Contact us or give us a call at 949-753-9100.