Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

From Beach To Backyard, Caution Can Reduce Firepit Burns

Date:
June 30, 2008
Source:
University of California - Irvine
Summary:
Backyard barbecues and beach bonfires are beloved summer activities across the country, but they also put people -- especially children -- at risk of painful, long-term injury.

Backyard barbecues and beach bonfires are beloved summer activities across the country, but they also put people – especially children – at risk of painful, long-term injury.

Dr. Marianne Cinat, UC Irvine Regional Burn Center director, urges extra caution with the use and cleanup of firepits or barbecues at the beach and at campsites. “We’re seeing approximately two dozen firepit injuries each year,” said Cinat, a surgery professor at UC Irvine Medical Center. “And all of these accidents are preventable.”

Cinat has noticed more burns as camping and backyard firepits have become more popular. About half of the injuries treated at her center occur at the beach; most involve children 6 and younger who crawl or fall into firepits.

And then there are the hidden dangers of sand-covered coals. Tina Aldatz Norris learned firsthand about those.

As a young girl growing up in Orange County, Aldatz Norris burned the soles of her feet on hot charcoals buried beneath sand at a beach firepit. She was treated at the UC Irvine Regional Burn Center for severe burns on both feet. For months afterward, the simple act of walking in sneakers or flats was painful.

To this day, Aldatz Norris’s feet are sensitive and prone to blistering. So she started Foot Petals, a Long Beach-based company that brings together podiatrists and engineers to create designer insoles that help women walk more comfortably.

“I’ve been inspired to turn a bad situation into a positive event in my life,” said Aldatz Norris, a Certified Pedorthist qualified to design orthotics. “I know that many children are injured every year due to firepit injuries, and I feel it’s critically important to raise safety awareness.”

Cinat says that there are some simple and crucial steps adults can take to lessen the risk of firepit burn injuries.

  • Don’t bury hot charcoals in sand. While sand might extinguish the flames, coals can smolder for up to 24 hours. Sand locks in heat, making smoldering coals even hotter. Worse yet, sand-covered coals cannot be seen, making them even more dangerous to children who may look at a firepit as a sand box. Cinat recommends that coals be extinguished by drenching them in water, waiting five minutes and drenching them again.If water is not available, simply let the coals burn out.The most risk occurs when hot coals are buried in the sand, creating a hidden danger.
  • Be aware of your environment, especially with children around. Treat firepits as you would a pool or anything else dangerous and exercise similar caution around them. Be wary of embers that spark from firepits. Even if it appears as if it has not been used recently, always assume there are hot coals or embers at the bottom of a firepit.
  • If injured, don’t put ice on the skin. Ice can cause skin damage, especially to children, whose skin is thinner than adults. Wash the burn with cool water for up to 10 minutes. For a small area, put a cool washcloth on it; with a larger burn, a cool towel can lower body temperature. Take the burn victim immediately to the nearest emergency room.

Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by University of California - Irvine. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

University of California - Irvine. "From Beach To Backyard, Caution Can Reduce Firepit Burns." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 30 June 2008. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/06/080630120121.htm>.
University of California - Irvine. (2008, June 30). From Beach To Backyard, Caution Can Reduce Firepit Burns. ScienceDaily. Retrieved July 31, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/06/080630120121.htm
University of California - Irvine. "From Beach To Backyard, Caution Can Reduce Firepit Burns." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/06/080630120121.htm (accessed July 31, 2014).

Share This




More Health & Medicine News

Thursday, July 31, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Dangerous Bacteria Kills One in Florida

Dangerous Bacteria Kills One in Florida

AP (July 31, 2014) Sarasota County, Florida health officials have issued a warning against eating raw oysters and exposing open wounds to coastal and inland waters after a dangerous bacteria killed one person and made another sick. (July 31) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Health Insurers' Profits Slide

Health Insurers' Profits Slide

Reuters - Business Video Online (July 30, 2014) Obamacare-related costs were said to be behind the profit plunge at Wellpoint and Humana, but Wellpoint sees the new exchanges boosting its earnings for the full year. Fred Katayama reports. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
Peace Corps Pulls Workers From W. Africa Over Ebola Fears

Peace Corps Pulls Workers From W. Africa Over Ebola Fears

Newsy (July 30, 2014) The Peace Corps is one of several U.S.-based organizations to pull workers out of West Africa because of the Ebola outbreak. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Weather Kills 2K A Year, But Storms Aren't The Main Offender

Weather Kills 2K A Year, But Storms Aren't The Main Offender

Newsy (July 30, 2014) Health officials say 2,000 deaths occur each year in the U.S. due to weather, but it's excessive heat and cold that claim the most lives. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

    Environment News

    Technology News



      Save/Print:
      Share:

      Free Subscriptions


      Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

      Get Social & Mobile


      Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

      Have Feedback?


      Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
      Mobile: iPhone Android Web
      Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
      Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
      Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins