HCA Healthcare/HealthONE’s Swedish Medical Center Physician Offers Labor Day Weekend Safety Tips

Swedish Medical Center serves as the only level I trauma and burn facility in the south Denver metro area.

HCA Healthcare/HealthONE’s Swedish Medical Center Physician Offers Labor Day Weekend Safety Tips
Englewood, CO, August 31, 2019 --(PR.com)-- As summer fades and the leaves change for Fall, Labor Day celebrations bring families together for cookouts and other gatherings.

Dr. Benson Pulikkottil, the medical director of the burn center at Swedish Medical Center, encourages everyone to have a fun Labor Day and remain safe while celebrating.

Labor Day burn safety starts with grill care. Making sure your grill works and its gas tanks are not leaking are good initial steps. Dr. Pulikkottil recommends checking for leaks by spraying soapy water on gas line connections. If you see water bubbles, there is a leak.

“Never use a flame to check for leaks,” he said. “That’s asking for an explosion.”

In addition:
· Create a “safe zone” surrounding the grill, or any area where there’s a burn risk, such as a campfire.
· Use grills only in properly ventilated areas, as the risk of carbon monoxide poisoning and fires increases if grilling in an enclosed area, such as a garage.
· Never use an accelerant such as gasoline to light a grill, campfire or debris pile. Gas fumes can ignite and cause a large explosion.
· Dispose of hot coals properly: Soak with water, then stir and soak again to make sure the fire is out.
· Always shut off the propane tank valve when not in use.
· Never try to light a gas grill with the lid closed.
· Always wear short sleeves and/or tight-fitting clothing while grilling.

For those planning to spend the holiday working in the yard, make sure to take extra precautions if you are going to have a burn pile. First, check local guidelines for outdoor burning. Then, make sure you know what is in the pile: A hidden aerosol can cause a huge explosion, and other items can emit toxic fumes when burned. Other safety tips include:
· Don’t use gasoline, lighter fluid, or any other flammable liquid to start the fire.
· Always have a hose nearby in case the fire starts getting out of control. Having another option for putting out the fire, like a bucket of sand or a fire extinguisher, nearby is also a good idea.
· Never park a vehicle on top of a pile of leaves or debris because the heat of the vehicle could ignite the pile.
· Do not leave a fire unattended or under the supervision of a minor.
· Make sure the fire is out and all hot coals are extinguished when your work is done.

“So much of what we treat could be avoided if people would always pause to consider the potential danger,” said Dr. Pulikkottil.

About Swedish

Swedish Medical Center, part of HCA Healthcare’s HealthONE, is located in the south metro Denver area where it has been a proud member of the community for more than 110 years. An acute care hospital with 408 licensed beds, annually Swedish cares for more than 200,000 patients with a team of approximately 2,000 dedicated colleagues, 300 volunteers and 1,400 physicians. Swedish serves as the Rocky Mountain Region’s referral center for the most advanced stroke treatment, and was the state’s first Joint Commission certified Comprehensive Stroke Center. Swedish also serves as the region’s neurotrauma and orthopedic trauma provider and is the south metro Denver area’s only level I trauma facility with a dedicated burn and reconstructive center. More about the advanced technologies and treatments offered at Swedish Medical Center can be found at SwedishHospital.com.
Swedish Medical Center
Kara Hamersky
(303) 817-5708