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Burn Awareness Week 2016

Feb 01, 2016

From January 31 to February 6, 2016, the British Columbia Professional Fire Fighters Burn Fund brings Burn Awareness Week to communities throughout British Columbia to teach children how to be responsible for their personal safety. 

Part of the week includes curriculum for children from Kindergarten through Grade 7, as well as the ever popular poster contest, all of which is geared towards helping you become more aware of the dangers of potential burns.

Here are some tips to keep you and your family safe from dangerous situations:

Hot Water 

Hot water scalds are the leading cause of burns for young children. 

  • Turn the cold tap on first, adding hot water to adjust the temperature. When turning off taps, turn the hot water off first, then the cold water.
  • Test the water before using it for children. 
  • Never leave children unattended; they may turn on the hot water.
  • Children are susceptible to burns at lower temperatures, so be mindful of that when serving heated liquids. 

Lighters and Matches

Lighters and matches are responsible for most fire-related deaths to young children. 
  • Lighters and matches are not toys to be played with.
  • Keep all matches and lighters stored in high places, beyond the reach of children.
  • Strategies can be discussed with children about fire and peer pressure, the difference between good fires and bad fires, and the law.

Kitchen Fires

On average, every Canadian will experience two kitchen fires in their lifetime.

  • Stoves can be dangerous. It's important that boundaries are set around the stove and oven, and that the two are never touched until the appropriate age.
  • Make sure children are away from adults preparing food.
  • When preparing food, keep pot and pan handles placed inwards
  • Children should play away from the kitchen, and should not climb on anything in the kitchen.
  • Teach children to STOP where they are, cover their face with their hands (unless their hands are burning), DROP to the ground, and ROLL over and over until the fire is out.

Treating Burns

  • Cooling the burned area will lessen the severity of injury if preformed immediately after the incident.
  • Keep the burned area in cool water for 10 to 15 minutes.
  • Never treat with ice, ointments, or butter.
  • If the burn is severe, immediately contact 911. Teach children how to dial 911.
  • Children have thinner skin than adults and sustain more sever burns at lower temperatures over a shorter period of time. 
  • At 60°C, it only takes five seconds for a third degree burn to develop. This is average hot water temperature from a house hold tap.
Hopefully, with these tips and the information learned during Burn Awareness Week, we can help you make your home a burn-free zone.