As experts predict that temperatures are set to soar across Australia this summer, with an increased risk of heatwaves, a heartbreaking warning about the potential danger of outdoor hoses has been circulating on Facebook.
In July this year, mum-of-three Stacey, who runs a baby First Aid company, Daisy First Aid Redhill & Croydon, posted an image of a nine-month-old baby who received second-degree burns from a scolding hot garden house.
"I've wanted to cry every time I've seen this photo but it's important to share," she writes.
"Two years ago this baby suffered second-degree burns to over 30 per cent of his body from being accidentally sprayed with a garden hose."
The fire department warns: "A garden hose exposed to direct sunlight during summer can heat the water inside the hose (not flowing) to 55 to 60 degrees Celsius (130-140 degrees Fahrenheit) which can cause burns especially to children and animals."
The simplest way to prevent this happening, she explains, is "to let the water flow a few minutes to cool before spraying on people or animals."
It's certainly not something many people would even think about, but with plenty of families around the country beginning the great Aussie tradition of backyard BBQs and popping the kids in paddling pools, slip n' slides and under the sprinkler, Essential Baby wanted to share this important warning.
This sentiment was echoed all over Facebook.
- "I would never have thought about this. Thanks for sharing."
- "Huge thanks for bringing it to my attention. With 2 small grandkids playing in my garden this summer, as well as my youngest of 4 sons being almost 12 years old, this could so easily happen to us. Now i will always run the water first, before it goes anywhere near my 3 precious monkeys. Thank you.
According to a report in The Sun about the incident, Nicholas Wolger from Arizona in the US was sitting in a paddling pool at the time, and when his mum went to fill it up 'a stream of boiling liquid emerged'.
"I thought he was crying because he was mad, because he hates when he gets sprayed in the face. I didn't think that it was burning him," she said. "Just be careful. Just touch it before you spray, before you let your kids near it."
Fortunately, Nicholas made a full recovery and was not permanently scarred.
It's a timely reminder as we come into summer and let's hope by raising awareness, we can prevent this type of accident from ever happening again.
According to Kidsafe NSW, burns and scalds of children aged 0 to 4 years, are a leading cause of injury resulting in hospitalisation. "Most happen at home and are largely preventable," it states on its website.
If a burn or scold does occur, Kidsafe recommends you:
- Apply cold running water to the burn or scold for at least 20 minutes.
- If running water is not available, wet two cloths and alternate them onto burn every two minutes. Do NOT use ice, butter, creams, etc
- You should always seek medical attention for any burn bigger than a 20 cent piece or with blisters, or
- If you have any concerns about your child.