Fire Safety

Fire Safety and Preventing Burns
Fire is a very dangerous thing, and the fact that your children can be drawn to the magic of fire can be quite a scary thing to overcome. The brightness of fire and the way it moves and reacts can cause the most inquisitive of children to be drawn to the flame, and this is when the danger of burns can occur quite easily. It's important to take not of the correct procedures when it comes to fire safety in order to help protect your child from danger and to ensure that they will understand how to grow up with fire.
How burns happen
Every year there is an average of 2400 children in Queensland who are admitted to hospital with serious burns. A whopping 39% of these injuries do require further treatment and burns have the potential to scar a person for life. Burns occur when contact with hot objects is made to the skin, so items such as fire, heaters and stove top cooking are big things to look out for. Even hot water can burn a child at a young age as their skin develops and gets stronger.
House Fires
Sadly we see every year deaths from house fires in Queensland and for the most part these fires occur from reasons that could've easily been prevented. A lot of the time these deaths occur in children under the age of 4 due to their smaller lung capacity and the children may prefer to hide in cupboards or wardrobes rather than try and escape and get help.  Some facts about house fires:

  • The majority of deaths amongst children in house fires occur in private residences such as houses, caravans and flats
  • Fires mainly occur at night and two thirds of deaths in children happen to children under the age of 5
  • Older houses are at a greater risk of house fires due to their older construction as well as lack of smoke alarms
  • Some common reasons for house fire include candles being left unattended, electrical faults in products and smoking. Fires can even start when children play with matches and lighters
  • Fires often will be contained in one room but these are still dangerous due to smoke which can produce some deadly toxic chemicals as objects burn
  • Smoke inhalation and asphyxiation is generally the cause of death in house fires

Prevention of house fire and burns
You should always be prepared for a house fire as they happen without prior warning. Here are some tips to help survive the situation and prevent burns and injuries from occurring and even worse, death:

  • Install smoke alarms. This is the most important point! Don't just install one and think your house is safe, you should install several in all areas of your house so that you can be best prepared. Make sure you install a smoke alarm in your child's bedroom
  • Create a fire escape plan and either memorise it or keep it in an area where you can easily get to it. To do so, draw a plan of your house and organise the safest route in the event of a fire and where you will meet each other. This way you will all know what to do and where to go. You should even arrange if possible what items to take with you should you have time, but never put your own or children's safety at risk just to get something. Items and objects are replicable, your lives aren't
  • Keep fire extinguishers and fire blankets in your house. Have them in safe and easy to get to areas and ensure you know how to work them
  • Teach your children to STOP, DROP & ROLL if they catch fire and teach them also to stay as close to the floor as possible in the event of smoke in the house
  • Put all heaters away from curtains and loose clothes
  • Install electrical safe wiring that has safety switches on them. Get an electrician to come to your house to inspect your wiring

Preventing Burns
Burns are something that can be avoided. Here are some tips to do so:

  • Place guards around ovens and heaters so children can't touch them
  • Don't let children in the kitchen when you are cooking
  • Make sure your children wear low fire danger clothing
  • If you are having a BBQ always supervise your children
  • Make sure irons and iron cords are out of reach when using it

You should always take first aid courses in burn safety to better understand how to treat burns should they occur and always be prepared for the worst in certain situations. A better understanding of fire and burn prevention will help you out when it comes to your children in the long run!