First Aid Tips for Burns in the Workplace
If a fire occurs in your Pueblo, CO, commercial building, your first concern should be the safety of your employees. Before you assess any fire damage, you should see if any of your workers need first aid.
Burn First Aid Tips for the Workplace
Burns are a common cause of injury during a fire. If an employee suffers a burn, you must determine how severe it is. A major burn requires emergency medical intervention. A major burn:
- Swells quickly
- Is at least 3 inches or 8 centimeters in diameter
- Encircles a leg or arm, or covers the groin, buttocks, feet, face, hands or a major joint
- Appears charred, or has brown, black or white patches
- Goes deep into all layers of the skin
- Makes skin leathery and dry
Treating Major Burns
If you suspect that an employee has a major burn, call 911 immediately. While you wait for first responders to arrive, you should raise and cover the burn. If possible, lift the wounded area so it is above the victim’s heart. Then put a clean cloth or gauze on top of the burn.
Since burns often lead to swelling, you should remove any tight belts or jewelry that the victim is wearing. Necklaces, in particular, could choke the victim if the neck starts to swell.
You should also keep a close eye on the victim to ensure he is still breathing. If you do not see or hear his lungs inflating, perform CPR immediately. Burn victims can quickly go into shock, as well. Signs of this condition include shallow breathing, clammy skin and a weak pulse.
Finally, keep the victim away from further harm. If possible, remove him from the source of the fire. Do not take off any clothes he is wearing, as doing so could make the damage worse.
Treating Minor Burns
An employee could also suffer a minor burn whenever fire damage occurs to your property. You should be able to treat this burn with basic first aid. Start by putting the burn under cool running water for approximately 10 minutes. If the burn is on the victim’s face, use a wet, cool cloth to ease the pain.
If blisters start to develop, do not pop them. They help prevent infection. If a blister does burst, apply water and an antibiotic ointment to the wound.
After the burn has cooled, rub a lotion onto the injury. Ideally, the lotion should contain cocoa butter or aloe vera. The lotion relieves pain and hydrates the skin.
Finally, place a clean bandage on top of the burn. Be sure to wrap it loosely so it does not put too much pressure on the burned skin. The victim can also take over-the-counter pain medication if necessary.
Once you have treated all employee injuries, you can move on to the next step of the recovery process: restoring your property. Fire damage cleanup professionals can remove charred items from your building and reconstruct any destroyed walls or roofs.
Immediately after a blaze, you may have to administer burn first aid to one or more employees. By following the above steps, you can limit how much harm the burns cause.