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How should a workplace burn be treated?


Approximately 20 percent of all serious burns occur in the workplace. One-third of on-the-job burn injuries involve workers in food service and hospitality industries. But, kitchens aren’t the only source of workplace burns. Burns occur in hospitals, factories, construction sites, schools, farms, warehouses, and almost every other type of Pennsylvania workplace.

Since any Pennsylvania worker can suffer an on-the-job burn, everyone should know these burn treatments.

What TO DO After a Burn

  • Put out any flames.
  • Check to make sure that any unresponsive burn victim is breathing and has a pulse.
  • Loosen any tight clothing or jewelry.
  • Check for additional injuries.
  • If the burn is small, remove any clothing that has been splashed with hot liquid. Place the burn under cold, running water for at least five minutes. Wrap the burn loosely with a clean (preferably sterile) cloth. Do not put pressure on the skin. Call the doctor if there are signs of infection.
  • If the burn is large, call 911, and do NOT put the burn in cold water. Keep the victim quiet and watch for signs of shock and difficulty breathing. If possible, raise the burned area above the heart. Cover the burn with a clean sheet or blanket. Do not give the burn victim anything to eat or drink.

What NOT To Do After a Burn

  • Don’t put ice on the burn. Putting ice directly on a burn can cause further injury.
  • Don’t put aloe, vitamin E, ointments, creams or gels on the skin. This could delay healing.
  • Don’t break any blisters. This increases the risk of infection.


Treatment for workplace burns can be intensive. Fortunately, hospitalization, rehabilitation and plastic surgery for burns are covered by Pennsylvania Workers’ Compensation. To learn more about workers’ compensation benefits, contact our experienced and compassionate legal team at Mednick, Mezyk & Kredo, P.C., at 888-807-WORK (9675). We offer a free initial consultation to discuss your case.