Summer can be dangerous time of year for burns. From warm, sunny days spent in the pool or at the beach to those Fourth of July fireworks, there seems to be burn risks around every corner this time of year.
Knowledge is half the battle. Knowing how to spot a burn danger can help reduce the risk that you or a family member has to spend a night in the emergency room. The following are some of the most common summer burn risks in Florida.
Florida provides a climate that allows residents to use grills and outdoor kitchen year-around, but their popularity still peaks during the summer months. Neighbors gather in the backyard, and families celebrate summer holidays with a cookout.
It pays to take precautions with grills and BBQs. Use only charcoal starter fluid with your charcoal grill, check the tanks and tubes of your gas grill regularly, and always keep children and animals away from the grill until it has completely cooled.
Many Florida homes have backyard pools, and many communities have large communal pools where families can spend an afternoon. It takes a combination of harsh chemicals to treat pool water, and exposure to them during handling can cause chemical burns. Take precautions anytime you treat your pool, and keep these chemicals far out of the reach of curious children.
You may laugh when we talk about the sun as a burn risk, but sunburns can cause major burn damage to the skin, increasing the risk of skin cancer. It does not take much to get a second degree burn in the searing Florida sun, so follow the recommendations from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to prevent sunburn this summer.
Open fires – campfires, fire pits, and bonfires on the beach – are a big part of many families’ summer traditions. Whether you like roasting hot dogs, making s’mores or just enjoying the atmosphere, a fire can be a lot of fun.
You are probably aware that you have to watch small children around open flames, but do not overlook older children who may be more willing to take risks around the fire. (Watch your pets too.) Also, never use gasoline or other accelerants to start or feed the fire. Igniting fumes are often deadly.
According to the Consumer Product Safety Commission, the two weeks surrounding Independence Day are the most dangerous time of the year for firework injuries. This is especially true for children. More than a third (35 percent) of the fireworks injuries that require emergency treatment in the U.S. occur to children under the age of 15. More than 9 percent are under the age of five.
And it is not just the big fireworks you have to worry about. Sparklers – beloved by kids and adults alike – were responsible for 19 percent of all fireworks injuries between June 20 and July 20, 2014.
While summer brings with it an increased risk of burn injury, most of these injuries are entirely preventable. By being aware of the burn risks, and taking a few simple steps to reduce these risks, you and your family can enjoy the summer holidays without having to visit the ER.
In the event of a burn for which another party is responsible (e.g., a fire started by another’s negligence or a fireworks injury caused by someone’s carelessness), talk to an attorney at Montero Law. You can reach us at 888-459-0529.