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Departments / Protective Services / Fire /

Burn Awareness

Burn Awareness Week – February 6th to 12th

Did you know?

  • Burns are a leading cause of death in our province and each year hundreds of victims suffer from these terrible injuries.
  • On average 19 fires occur each day in British Columbia
  • Every day someone is injured by fire in British Columbia
  • Fire causes approximately $600,000 damage each day in B.C.
  • Fire kills in British Columbia every 10 days
  • 39% of burn injuries in BC are caused by hot liquids or vapours
  • 47% of burn injuries in BC are caused by fires
  • 58% of persons burned in fires are between 21 to 50 years of age
  • The majority of fires occur in private dwellings
  • The ignition of flammable liquids and substances such as cooking fats and gasoline are major causes of burn injuries from fire
  • Having working smoke alarms in your home cuts your risk of dying in a fire

Burn Prevention and Treatment

  • Many fatal burns to children are the result of their playing with fire. Teach children that matches and lighters are tools for adults not toys for children.  Use child-resistant lighters and store all matches and lighters out of sight and out of reach of children.
  • In the kitchen, keep children at a safe distance from the cooking area and never leave hot liquids unattended or at the end of a counter where they may be pulled down by a child. Turn pot handles to the back of the stove when cooking. Wear short or tight fitting sleeves when cooking.
  • Keep appliances such as irons and hair curling irons out of children’s reach.
  • Use extreme caution when using a microwave.
  • If your clothes catch on fire – STOP immediately, DROP to the floor, cover your face with your hands and ROLL over and over until the flames are out.
  • Immediately cool a burn by placing it under cool water for 10-15 minutes. Cool water helps lower the temperature of the skin to stop the burning process, numb the pain and reduce or stop swelling.
  • After cooling, apply a clean, dry dressing to first degree burns. Second and third degree burns require medical attention immediately.
  • Never use butter, oils, lotions, ice or ointments on a burn. This only seals heat in.
  • Don’t break blisters as this could cause infection.

For more information visit the BC Professional Fire Fighters’ Burn Fund website at www.burnfund.org.