Burn Safety

scald pamphlet



Hot Liquid Scalds to Children under 5 Is Leading Burn Injury

The leading burn injury in Massachusetts is hot liquid scalds to children under 5. Here are some tips to prevent burns from hot liquids (scald) burns:

  1. Don’t hold babies or toddlers while drinking hot coffee or tea. Put your hot beverage down, because a wiggling baby can move your arm and spill the drink.
  2. Put drinks and soups toward the center of the table away from curious fingers. Babies like to grab things.
  3. Consider replacing tablecloths with place mats to prevent children from pulling everything on the table onto themselves.
  4. Create a 3-foot safety zone around the stove and barbecue where children are not allowed, even when no cooking is taking place.
  5. Turn pot handles inward over the stove.
  6. Constantly supervise a young child in the bathtub. Place children facing away from faucets, so that they cannot turn on the hot water

 If a burn occurs, here’s what to do:

  1. Remove the victim from the area of danger and call 9-1-1.
  2. Cool the burn area with cold water; never use grease, butter, ointments, lotions or fats.
  3. Gently remove any jewelry or watches from the injured area, before it begins to swell.
  4. Don’t remove any clothing that is sticking to the burn. This could cause further damage and/or infection.
  5. Cover the burn with a clean sheet or towel, to protect from infection.

Stop, Drop and Roll

If fire ignites clothing, it is important to remember to Stop, Drop, Cover and Roll. Stop immediately. Gently drop to the ground; Cover your face; and Roll back and forth. Children should be taught to stop, drop and roll if their clothing is on fire, and older children, adults and seniors must be aware that they can do it in a tight space, by rocking back and forth until the flames are out, or using a blanket or coat to smother the flames.