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Help educate consumers about the dangers of hot water
Published:  21 June, 2011

CIPHE is calling for plumbers to educate their customers after baby dies from hot water burns after climbing into a bath.

This follows the inquest into the accidental death of an 18-month-old 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, said the Institute is determined to help prevent similar accidents by encouraging members to raise awareness among their customers about controlling water temperature.

"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," he said.

"By educating the public and encouraging the use of TMVs we can help guard against future tragedies."

Since 2010 there has been a legal requirement in England and Wales (and in Scotland since 2006) to limit bathing outlet temperatures in new dwellings to 48ºc. The British Burns Association recommends lower bathing temperatures for children should be 37 to 37.5ºc.