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Protect your children from scalds and burns

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On National Burn Awareness Day (16 October 2019), Hereford & Worcester Fire and Rescue Service is aiming to reduce the number of burns and scalds, especially to children.

The day supports the Children’s Burns Trust SafeTea Campaign, which aims to prevent serious burns (scalding) from mugs of hot tea or coffee, and to ensure that parents/carers know how to give burns first aid.

Station Commander Amy Bailey of HWFRS Community Risk said: “A burn injury is for life. Children and the elderly are the most vulnerable, and the majority of injuries occur as a result of an accident that could so easily have been prevented.

“We want to make parents and carers more aware of how serious tea and coffee scalds can be, but also that other things that can cause fire – candles, matches and lighters – or are hot – kettles, irons and hair straighteners – should be kept of out of children’s reach.”

Other advice on National Burn Awareness Day includes:

  • make sure children don’t play near fires or heaters to avoid them getting burnt
  • use the back hobs on the stove and make sure saucepan handles don’t stick out to avoid them being knocked off
  • never leave children unattended in the kitchen
  • fit a childproof guard in front of open fires or heaters – the best ones can be fixed to the wall
  • clothing will always burn if in contact with naked flames – but some much faster than others
  • if your or your children’s clothes catch fire, stop, drop and roll. Don’t run around, you’ll make the flames worse. Lie down and roll around to make it harder for the fire to spread and smother the flames with a heavy material, like a coat or blanket.
  • Burn first aid: Cool, call and cover!
  • o cool the burn with running cold tap water for 20 minutes and remove all clothing and jewellery (unless it is melted or firmly stuck to the wound)
  • o call for help – 999, 111 or local GP for advice
  • o cover with cling film or a sterile, non-fluffy dressing or cloth. Make sure the patient is kept warm


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