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By Joseph Dell
Managing Partner

When being served in a cafe or restaurant, you will expect that the server in question will take the appropriate care in avoiding spilling food or water, as well as processing your order correctly. When establishments become busy and demanding, it is often the case that servers become rushed. As a result, they may be less careful and make stupid mistakes.

Most mistakes that servers make will be harmless. For example, they might forget your drink order or serve the wrong dish. However, if servers become careless when it comes to serving hot food and beverages, the results can be extremely serious. Many adults and children become severely injured by hot water burns each year, and many of these burn incidents take place in cafes and restaurants.

If you or your child was burned due to a hot beverage spill in an establishment in the state of New York, you may want to take legal action. The pain and suffering that was experienced, as well as the financial implications, may be the responsibility of the premises owner to cover under premises liability law.

What types of damage can hot water cause?

When a person is scalded by hot water, it can cause serious damage to the skin. The high heat of the water can be enough to destroy cells and tissue. This can lead to the affected person going into shock. In some cases, especially if a young child is affected, the burns could threaten the life of the burn victim.

How should a hot water burn be treated?

Treating a hot water burn immediately is crucial to recovery. First, the source of heat should be removed. This may include removing wet clothing. Instead of ice or very cold water, cool running water should be applied to the burned area for at least 20 minutes.

When is a premises owner liable for a burn injury?

If a server did not exercise care and spilled a hot drink over a person, the premises owner could be held responsible. In addition, if staff did not do enough to treat the burn properly after the incident, they may also be found to have been negligent. It is important to take action after a burn injury to understand your rights.

About the Author
Joseph G. Dell, the firm’s Managing Partner, is regarded as one of New York State’s top trial lawyers and a zealous advocate of those injured through the negligence of others. Having founded the firm in 1994 with the singular goal of leveling the playing field for those injured, Mr. Dell has worked tirelessly for his clients since its inception. In addition to meeting with clients on a daily basis and trying cases, Mr. Dell is a frequent lecturer at Law School and Bar Associations on cases of significant importance in the fields of negligence and medical malpractice. If you have any questions regarding this article, you can contact Mr. Dell here.