“Children rely on our ability to protect them from burn injuries through our knowledge and experience.  Please take the necessary steps required to prevent these horrible injuries from occurring by following the safety tips provided,” stated State Fire Marshal Geraci. 

The following safety tips will help protect those you love from burn injuries by creating a safe home environment and abroad.

  • Teach children that matches and lighters are not toys. Keep them locked up and out of reach of children.  Instruct children not to touch them and to tell an adult if found.
  •  Store all flammable liquids, chemicals and cleaners out of reach of children and install child-proof locking mechanisms on the cabinet doors.
  • Do not leave lit candles unattended.  Families can create a pleasant ambience, while ensuring safety, through the use of flameless LED candles.
  • Replace damaged electrical cords on appliances.
  • Keep hot foods and liquids from edges of counters and tables.
  • The number one prevention measure is supervision.  The American Burn Association suggests adults draw a circle in the dirt around the fire pit with a stick in a 4- to 5-foot radius so that children can readily see how far away to stay  Coals will remain hot for hours after a fire is extinguished.  Ashes act as an insulator and hot coals can easily cause burns to exposed skin.
  • Parents can keep younger children safe by confining them to a pack in play, high chair, or play yard  –  child is still visible and audible to parent, but is confined to a specific space.  When using the stove, keep pot handles turned inward to prevent being knocked over or pulled to the floor.
  • Prepackaged microwavable foods and soups are frequent causes of steam and scald burn injuries.  Allow foods to cool in the microwave before removing (at least one minute).Use hot pads to remove the product and allow for cooling before giving to a child.
  • Never hold a child while preparing hot foods or drinking hot liquids.  The safe water temperature in a child’s bath is between 90 to 100 degrees.
  • Bath water temperature should be tested with a thermometer.  Adult’s skin is thicker than a child’s, so the adult may not feel the water is hot, but it may be at a dangerous temperature for a child, with thinner skin more is susceptible to burns at lower temperatures.
  • Run hot water from a faucet for one minute, then fill a cup with hot water and use a thermometer to check for proper temperature before using.
  • Always supervise children in the bath.
  • If a burn occurs, cool the burn with cool water for 3-5 minutes, cover with a clean dry cloth and seek medical help if: The burn is covering a part of the body that bends (such as a joint), If the burn is bigger than the size of your palm, If the burn has blisters or anything more serious than a small second degree burn.  You should also set your water heater at 120 degrees or below to prevent scald injuries.

In addition, ensure you have properly working smoke alarms on every level of your home; plan and practice your home fire escape plan, know two ways out of every room, and determine a safe location outside to meet.  Never go back into a burning building.

For more safety tips, please visit the following websites:

www.burnprevention.org; www.mdsp.org/firemarshal; www.safekids.org; www.fema.gov; www.homesafetycouncil.org