Burn Awareness Week spans from February 4 to February 10. The American Burn Association created Burn Awareness Week to help educate the public on the causes and prevention of common burns.
How Can You Prevent Burns?
Unfortunately, Jason R. Schultz has seen his share of burn injuries in his over 25 years as a personal injury attorney. To prevent these injuries, follow these tips:
Preventing Scald Burns
- According to the Burn Foundation, you should keep your water heater set no higher than 120 degrees F (the “low-medium” setting).
- Always test the water first before placing a child in it. It should not be higher than 100 degrees F. A child’s skin is much more susceptible to burns than an adult’s is.
Preventing Flame Burns
- Never play with matches or lighters. Always keep them out of reach of children.
- Always stop, drop, and roll — never run — if your clothing catches fire.
- Do not leave the room or go to sleep with candles burning.
- Do not leave children alone near grills, fireworks, fireplaces, candles, or fire pits. Keep them at least three feet away.
- Be safe while handling fireworks.
- Make sure your home has working smoke alarms on every floor. Check the batteries monthly.
- Keep a fire extinguisher and learn how to use it.
- Use space heaters carefully.
- Teach your children what to do if they hear a smoke alarm.
- Teach your children how to escape your home in a fire. Know two or more ways to get out of every room. Do a practice drill at least monthly.
- Once a year, have a professional check and clean your chimney and fireplace.
- At least every 10 years, have a professional electrician check the wiring in your home.
Preventing Burns in the Kitchen
- Keep young children at least three feet away if you are cooking or moving food or liquid that is hot.
- When cooking, wear clothes with short, fitted sleeves.
- To smother a fire on the stove, put a lid over it.
- Turn pan and skillet handles to the back of the stove.
Preventing Contact Burns
- Do not place your child in a car seat before determining whether the surface is hot.
- Unplug hot curling and clothing irons when you are done using them. Always keep them away from children.
Prevent Burn Injuries on the Road
- Always wear correct safety gear on your motorcycle. This should include a jacket to protect your arms, long pants to protect your legs, and boots to protect your ankles and feet.
- If your car begins smoking after an accident, get as far away as possible.
What If There Is a Fire or Burn Injury?
Unfortunately, fires and burn injuries happen. If you or your child suffers a burn injury, do the following:
- Stop, drop, and roll if clothing is on fire.
- If someone gets a burn injury, use cool (not cold) running water to stop the burning.
- If clothing or jewelry is stuck to the skin, do not remove it.
- Cover the burn with a clean dry sheet or loose bandages and see a doctor right away.
Learn more about burns, treatment, and injury liability by reading the following pages: