Penticton Fire Department urges residents to slow down

The Penticton Fire Department is urging residents to slow down and plan ahead to prevent scalds and burns.

Feb. 3 to 9 marks Burn Awareness Week to heighten knowledge that fire and burn injuries are the second leading cause of accidental death in children aged one to four years, and the third leading cause of injury and death for those aged one to 18.

"So many burns and scalds can be prevented and a bit of awareness of your surroundings will go a long way to protecting yourself and loved ones," said Penticton fire chief Wayne Williams. "Little things like checking the temperature of the bath water or turning pot handles take only seconds, but can save people from painful scalds from boiling water."

A survey suggests that 70 per cent of Canadian parents did not know that the most common cause of burn injuries to children is scalds from hot liquids, rather than fire. The National Fire Prevention Association said pre-packaged microwavable soups are a frequent cause of scald burn injuries — particularly noodle varieties — because they can easily tip over and pour hot liquid and ingredients on to skin. Matches and lighters have also been known to tempt children. Children as young as 18 months have caused fires by operating lighters. Disposable lighters sold by retailers must be child-resistant, but it doesn't mean it is child proof. The fire department reminds people to store lighters out of sight and reach of children and to not remove the safety devices from the lighter.

If someone does get burned, it is recommended they treat it right away. Cool the burn with cool water for three to five minutes and cover with a clean, dry cloth. If needed, seek medical assistance.

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