Firefighters encourage community to keep burns front of mind this winter

Published:
Thursday, 29 June 2023 at 6:52 am

Victorian fire services are urging families to be mindful of fire safety around the home during the school
holidays as part of Burns Awareness Month.

Fire Rescue Victoria Commissioner Gavin Freeman AFSM, said fires in the home could take hold in
minutes, causing serious burns or worse to the occupants.

“As Victorians spend more time indoors over the winter months, we’re urging people to take some
simple steps to prevent devastating house fires and burns,” he said.

“Unattended cooking is one of the most common causes of house fires in Victoria, and can easily lead
to burns, which is why we always advise people to always look while you cook.

“In addition, keep a fire blanket and fire extinguisher in your kitchen and use them if safe to do so. In all
cases, call Triple Zero (000) so that fire crews can attend and ensure the fire is fully extinguished.”

“I also advise parents to supervise any children in the kitchen as well, and keep all pot handles turned
in.”

CFA Acting Chief Officer Garry Cook AFSM said Burns Awareness Month was a timely reminder for
Victorian families not to let their guard down this winter to help prevent serious burns and devastating
house fires.

“We know from recent CFA data that sleeping areas, lounge rooms and kitchens are the most common
rooms where residential fires result in serious injuries like burns, which can often be prevented,” A/CO
Cook AFSM said.

“If a burn happens then it’s critical that cool running water is applied to the burn area for 20 minutes,
clothing is removed from the area, the burn is covered by a clean dressing and you seek medical
attention if larger than a 20-cent coin.

“It’s also important to continue checking your heating systems for faults, be aware of where candles are
lit in the house and use a fire screen in front of an open fireplace and make sure you have working
smoke alarms in every bedroom, hallway and living area.”

More information on preventing and treating burns and scalds at home is available at Kidsafe Australia
or on the FRV and CFA websites.

Prevention and treatment of burns and scalds: 

• Prevent - take action to prevent burns and scalds. Learn more at https://kidsafe.com.au/national-burnsawareness-month/.
• Remove - remove yourself from danger. Remove any clothing and jewellery from the burn area unless
stuck to the skin.
• Cool - place the burn under cool running water for twenty minutes. Items like ice, oil or butter should
never be placed on a burn.
• Cover the burn with a clean dressing.
• Seek medical attention if the burn or scald is on the face, hands, feet, genitals or buttocks, is larger than a
20-cent coin or blistered.

Updated