Arizona Burn Center issues advisory about dangers of extreme summer heat
Doctors with MIHS’s Arizona Burn Center today issued warnings about the dangers of excessive summer heat as Arizona and the Southwest prepare for record breaking temperatures.
Burn Center Director Dr. Kevin Foster said second and third degree burns from hot asphalt and concrete, playground equipment, car and truck interiors and surfaces, and scalding water from outdoor hoses are common when outdoor temperatures exceed 100 degrees.
“Young children are particularly vulnerable,” Dr. Foster said. “Not only is their skin more sensitive, but they haven’t learned how to remove themselves from the hot surface or object. Though they might be uncomfortable on the hot surface, they don’t understand why they are hurting or that they need to move.”
Dr. Foster said the warning about hot pavement and concrete also applies to pets. These surfaces can remain dangerously hot even after the sun goes down and could burn a dog or cat’s paws.
With temperatures this weekend hitting dangerous levels, Dr. Foster offered tips to keep kids safe:
- Wear closed toed shoes while playing.
- Limit sun exposure to avoid burned skin
- Test playground equipment with the back of your hand before allowing children to play. Plastic and rubber can heat up to dangerous levels.
- Let outdoor hoses run until the water cools.
- Always keep children away from outdoor grills.
- Avoid using kerosene or gasoline to start a grill or “get the flames going.”
- Keep an eye on your child or pet at all times and look for signs of distress.
- Never leave a child or pet unattended in a car.
If your child is burned, apply cool water to the area for several minutes and immediately consult a physician. Most burns require medical attention.
For more information, visit www.mihs.org