Working in the community to help prevent burns and scalds

 
Last updated:
18 October 2016

Firefighters across West Sussex are helping to deliver lifesaving advice as part of National Burns Awareness Day this week.

Prevention and good first aid are key to reducing the number and severity of burns and scalds occurring each year, especially in children and the elderly.

National Burns Awareness Day, this Wednesday October 19, is supported by the British Burn Association and Child Accident Prevention Trust, as well as fire services and health care providers.

Burns can be fatal or have serious life-changing impacts, but most are preventable. Being aware of potential hazards in your home is a good first step, then acting to stop these hazards leading to serious injuries.

If a burn or scald does occur it is vital you know what to do and a key part of this week’s awareness campaign is promoting the three Cs of burn treatment:

• Cool the burn – ideally with running cold water for 20 minutes
• Call for help – 999, or 111 or a local GP for advice
• Cover the cooled burn – with clingfilm or a clean non-fluffy cloth.

Events are taking place across the county as part of the event.

Crews in East Grinstead have joined forces with the Queen Victoria Hospital, a specialist NHS hospital providing life-changing reconstructive surgery, burns care and rehabilitation services for people across the South of England, to help ensure as many people as possible understand the risks from burns, how to avoid them and the best ways of treating burns with immediate first aid.

As part of the work the Queen Vic's burns team, WSFRS crews and colleagues from South East Coast Ambulance Service and Kent, Surrey & Sussex Air Ambulance Trust will be in East Grinstead High Street on Wednesday to hand out information and advice to members of the public.

Other crews are also carrying out local awareness, for example, Haywards Heath are visiting the Haywards Heath Family Centre on Wednesday to share the important information, and crews at Littlehampton have been including burns awareness information in their school visits.

Neil Stocker, Acting Director of Public Protection & Assistant Chief Fire Officer for West Sussex Fire & Rescue Service, said: “National Burns Awareness Day is an excellent way of warning people about the risks of burns and to help prevent serious injuries from occurring. We would rather nobody was put at risk in this way but, when someone is injured, it is vital that those around them know what to do.”

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