5-Year-old Maricopa boy scalded by pasta water, air-lifted to hospital

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MARICOPA -- A 5-year-old Maricopa boy was flown to the Arizona Burn Center at the Maricopa Medical Center Wednesday afternoon after he was badly burned in a kitchen accident.

According to Brad Pitassi, spokesman for the Maricopa Fire Department, the little boy suffered second-degree burns on his face, chest and arms.

The child's mother told firefighters that she had been making pasta for lunch. Not realizing her little boy was standing behind her, she turned, pot in hand, to drain the water. She bumped into the child, causing scalding water to slosh out of the pot and splash him, seriously burning him.

Paramedics called in a medical helicopter to fly the boy to the hospital. At last check, the child was in stable condition.

According to Dr. Marc Matthews, a burn surgeon and one of the directors at the Arizona Burn Center at Maricopa Medical Center, scald burns are the most common type burn injuries among children.

“We see over 300 pediatric burns a year in the Burn Center and this, by far, is the most common,” Matthews said in a news release. “The majority of those happened in the kitchen and bathroom, which is why we have to watch our children at all times when they’re in the kitchen and in the bathroom.”

Matthews advises turning down the thermostat on the water heater so water does not come out of the faucet scalding hot.

If a child is scalded, Matthews said you should not put ice on the area. Rather, apply room-temperature water and call 911 immediately.

»Tips for scald burn prevention