The Chartered Institute of Plumbing and Heating Engineering (CIPHE) is urging plumbing and heating professionals to help educate consumers about the dangers of hot water. It’s in response to the recent inquest into the tragic accidental death of 18 month old Katelyn Seers who suffered burns after climbing into a hot bath.
The tragedy occurred in 2007 after the toddler was left briefly unattended next to a bath that was filling up. She suffered 30% burns and died in hospital several days later from septic shock.
Danny Davis, principal technical officer at the CIPHE spoke about the Institute’s determination to help prevent similar accidents by encouraging members to raise awareness amongst their customers about controlling water temperature.
He commented, “It’s a tragic story but sadly there have been other similar cases, particularly involving disabled people and children who need extra care when bathing. Plumbing and heating professionals, who work in households with elderly or disabled people, or children, should tell the main care-giver about safe bathing temperatures and how a thermostatic mixing valve (TMV) can help. TMVs can limit the water temperature to the desired temperature so there’s no need for a separate thermometer and no need to worry.”
Since 2010 there has been a legal requirement in England and Wales (Scotland since 2006) to limit bathing outlet temperatures in new dwellings to 48⁰C. The British Burns Association recommends bathing temperatures for children should be 37-37.5⁰C.
Added Danny, “By educating the public and encouraging the use of TMVs we can help guard against future tragedies. It’s my sincere hope that what happened to Katelyn is never repeated. ”