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Burn Awareness Week helps prevent children from getting severe burns

February 3 to 9 is Burn Awareness Week across North America. It aims to teach kids how to be responsible for their personal safety and increases awareness of potentially harmful situations.
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​Children under age five are most at risk of severe burns

Statistics from 2016 and 2017 show that of the 4500 severe burns seen in emergency departments across British Columbia (B.C.), the largest group was children under the age of five. Almost 700 children aged 0 to 4 were admitted to emergency departments across B.C. with severe burns. The most common cause? Hot water scalds and contact with hot objects. 

At 60°C (140°F) it takes less than five seconds to get a third degree (full thickness) burn. And that’s not as hot as beverages such as tea, hot chocolate and coffee, which are generally served at temperatures between 71.1°C (160°F) and 85°C (185°F).

Tips to help keep kids safe from hot water scalds

  • When using water taps, turn COLD water on first. Then add HOT water and adjust the temperature. Reverse the order when turning water off: HOT water first, then the COLD water. 
  • Always test young children’s bath and sink water before using. When bathing children, never leave them unattended as they may turn on the hot water or slip in your absence. 
  • Turn the handles of your pots and pans inward, over the stove, away from the reaching arms of a child. 
Learn more child burn prevention safety tips at the Burn Fund website.

Trauma Services BC is dedicated to ensuring optimal care for trauma patients in British Columbia. It supports injury prevention by providing data to provincial and regional injury prevention and public health partners. Learn more at the Trauma Services BC website
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