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Home hot water temperatures remain a burn hazard for young and elderly
Date:3/28/2013

manufacture, capacity and descriptors used on the temperature gauge in 708 Baltimore city homes. Demographic data such as the household size, income and home ownership status was also documented. Researchers found that despite the fact that 99 percent of the water heaters examined in the study were purchased after the voluntary standard was implemented, hot water temperatures remained dangerously high for 4 out of 10 homes. Gas water heaters were less likely to have safe temperatures and water heaters that held fewer gallons per person were more likely to be above the recommended 120F.

"Given the limitations of reducing tap water temperature through current thermostat technology alone, other existing strategies should be prioritized," said Shields. "One potential solution is to equip faucets with anti scald devices, such as thermostatic mixer valves, anti-scald aerators or scald guards, but until engineering solutions can be implemented on a large-scale, attention must be paid to educational messages. To prevent scald burns, families should be encouraged to test hot water temperatures after adjusting gauges to insure that a safe temperature is achieved."


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Contact: Natalie Wood-Wright
nwoodwri@jhsph.edu
410-614-6029
Johns Hopkins University Bloomberg School of Public Health
Source:Eurekalert

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