As we dust off the costumes and get ready for the spookiest time of the year there are a few safety points to keep in mind to ensure the ghosts and ghouls are the only frightening things this Halloween!
Firework displays can offer great fun for all the family but unfortunately, despite annual safety warning, too many end with injury. Reported figures show that the safest place to enjoy fireworks is at a large public display – fewer people are injured at these events than private parties/at home.
If you do decide to have a firework display at home there are a few things you can do to ensure it is as safe as possible, such as:
- Only buy fireworks with a ‘BS’ code
- Store in a closed box
- One person should be in charge – that person should not drink alcohol prior to or during the display
- Have a bucket of water ready
- Read the instructions
- Ensure spectators stand well back
- Light one firework at a time
- Stand well back after lighting – never go back to a lit firework
- Don’t try to relight a ‘dud’ firework – leave for at least 20 minutes and then place in a bucket of water.
- NEVER throw a firework
Sparklers are often viewed as being harmless, however they burn at very high temperatures and can cause serious injury. Some important points to remember:
- Sparklers should not be given to children under 5 years old
- They should be held at arm’s length and whilst wearing gloves
- When it has finished place it in a bucket of cold water
- Remove any jewellery or clothing near the burn if possible
If an injury/burn does occur the following immediate management should be followed:
- Remove the source of heat/burning if possible
- Cool the burn by holding it under running water for at least 10 minutes
- Remove jewellery/clothing from near the burn if possible
- After cooling, cover the area with cling film
- Seek further medical advice if appropriate
Serious burns include:
- Face, hands or feet
- A deep burn – which is often less painful/painless
- A large area
We hope you enjoy the holidays and stay safe however don’t forget that should the worst happen, our Enhanced GP Service is open week days until 8pm. We can treat minor burns and injuries and you won’t have the stress of waiting for hours in a busy A&E. Simply give us a call on 028 90667 878 or walk in at reception.
Article written by Dr Aileen McPhillips.
Dr Aileen McPhillips is and Private GP at Kingsbridge Private Hospital. She graduated from Queen’s University, Belfast in 2004. She completed training in General Practice and graduated as a member of the Royal College of General Practitioners in 2009. She enjoys all aspects of General Practice, however she has a special interest in Family Planning and Women’s Health (and has completed further training with Diplomas from the Faculty of Family Planning and Royal College of Obstetricians & Gynaecologists. To book an appointment with Dr McPhilips, please visit our online booking link.