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Salamanders Young Burn Survivors > Be Aware! Be Safe! > Burn Safety Tips

"I didn't think." -- "I didn't know." -- "I forgot." -- Every day, in hospitals all over the world, people are saying things like these. DON'T LET IT HAPPEN TO YOU!

Learn these guidelines and follow them, but remember to use your common sense as well; there are always other ways to get burned, and we could never list them all.

Preventing Burns

Keep your water heater set no higher than 50°C (125°F). Always run cold water into the bath-tub first, then add the hot water, especially if you have a metal bath-tub.

Be careful using microwave ovens. Steam escaping from the container can cause scalds. Foods can be just warm in one spot and scalding in another.

Keep hot liquids especially, anything else that's hot, and electrical appliance flexes, away from the edge of tables and kitchen work-tops.

When you are cooking, always make sure there are no pan handles overhanging the edge of your cooker, and be careful if you have to lean over a pan to reach another behind it.

Always switch off ovens and hotplates after use, and remember that they will stay hot enough to burn for some time, even if they 'look' cooled down.

Never forget that portable heaters, laundry irons, electric hair straighteners and curlers, and even table lamps, take time to cool down after use.

Never wear loose clothing near cookers, open fires, and heaters. Always wear short sleeves or roll up your sleeves when you are tending a fire or cooking.

Never use petrol (gasoline) for anything other than to fuel an engine. Never top up a fuel tank in an enclosed space (such as a garage or shed).

Never throw aerosol cans or electric batteries on a fire. Never use petrol (gasoline), lighter fuel, or paraffin (kerosene) to make a fire burn better.

Pay attention to "flammable" and "corrosive" warnings on chemical products. Always read and follow the safety instructions on the labels.

Keep well away from outdoor power lines, and never fly a kite anywhere near them.

Be safe in the sunshine. Don't stay in the sun too long unless you are covered up or using sun-screen cream. Remember that you may not feel the sun burning you if there is a breeze cooling you or if you have been in water. If you are a burn survivor, it is especially important to keep the sun off the places that have been burned, because those places will not have the same natural protection as normal skin.

Never leave a young child alone in a bathroom or kitchen, or in a room with a convector heater or an open fire. Keep young children away from hot taps (faucets) and water pipes. Never drink hot tea or coffee while you are holding a child. Keep matches, lighters, and chemicals such as bleach out of reach of children. Always remember that a young child's skin is more delicate, and something you can safely handle may be hot enough to burn a young child!

Fire Safety In Your Home

Keep room doors closed at night; even a normal door may keep fire back for more than 15 minutes, and a fire-resistant door can hold back fire for 45 minutes or more.

Install smoke detectors in each bedroom corridor, at the top of each stairway and along your normal exit route. Check the batteries once a month, and replace them at the same time each year.

If you have an open fire, use a fire guard, especially when the room is empty. Keep curtains, drying laundry, and anything else that's flammable at least one meter away from fires, cookers, and candle flames.

Never leave a frying pan or a chip pan (deep fryer) unattended. Never fill a chip pan more than one-third full with fat or oil, and lower the food you're cooking into it (don't just drop it in).

Never smoke in bed, or leave a burning cigarette in an ashtray. Always make sure cigarette ends are properly extinguished. Before emptying ashtrays, make sure the contents are completely cold.

Switch off and unplug anything that is not being used. Have appliances serviced annually. Replace damaged flexes. Danger signs: blown fuses; flickering lights; scorch marks on plugs or sockets; hot plugs or sockets.

Have an escape route planned from every room in your house, bearing in mind that your normal exit route may be blocked by fire, and make sure everyone in the house knows the escape plans.

If a fire does start: don't stop to pick anything up; don't delay to put more clothes on (It is better to be naked and safe than to be fully-dressed and dead!); GET OUT AT ONCE! and STAY OUT!