Burn & Scald Injury Prevention

The Charleston Fire Department and the MUSC Children's Hospital offer the following tips to parents and care givers to prevent burn and scald injuries:

  • Install smoke alarms in your home and change the batteries at least once a year. Plan and practice escape routes in case of fire. Identify a family meeting place.
  • Teach children to Stop, Drop, and Roll if their clothes catch on fire.
    • Stop right away.
    • Drop to the ground; cover your chest with your hands.
    • Roll over and over or back and forth to put out the fire.
    • Cool a burn. For minor burns, run cool water immediately over the burn.
    • Seek emergency medical help immediately for more serious burns.
  • Always use sunscreen on children when outdoors. Do not expose infants and very young children to the sun without protective clothing.
  • Do not allow children to play near outdoor fires or burning debris. Establish a three-foot "safe zone" around outdoor burning areas and enforce at all times.
  • Children should not have access to flammable liquids or household chemicals; keep these items out of reach or in a locked cabinet.
  • Do not allow children to play in cooking areas. Create a three-foot "safe zone" around kitchen appliances.
  • Never leave any unattended items on the stove top. Make sure all pot handles are turned to the inside of the stove.
  • Children under the age of 14 should not operate a microwave oven without an adult present.
  • Keep clothing irons and curling irons out of reach of children.
  • Do not set your hot water heater higher than 120°F.
  • Never drink or carry hot liquids while carrying or holding a child.
  • Keep all hot items away from the sides of a table.

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