Kitchen safety

Sarnia burn victim promotes kitchen safety

A Sarnia real estate agent who suffered second and third degree burns to 30% of her body in a kitchen accident stresses the importance of safety for others.

Noelle Frank was cooking pasta in May 2017 when the pot of boiling water tipped over and spilled over her legs.

She said telling her story is difficult but worth sharing, even if it saves someone from having a similar accident.

“Some people in the community come up to me and say ‘since I heard your story, every time I cook, I think of you and tell my kids not to come near the stove,'” he said. Frank said “Just hearing this makes me think I want to do this more, share my story and educate people. It’s just a horrible, traumatic experience and the healing takes years after the initial injury.

Frank said that five years after her accident, she still had long-term side effects.

“A long-term side effect is that I have problems with thermoregulation because my sweat glands have been destroyed,” she said. “So if I wanted to go ice skating, for example, I can’t stay in the cold for long because my skin swells and it’s very painful.”

She said the community has been an incredible source of support, including the Sarnia Fire and Rescue Department.

“I try to be a positive advocate, and I’ve been incredibly lucky to have had the support of the entire community during my recovery. For many, the psychological and emotional effects of a severe burn can be debilitating.

Some kitchen safety tips include using rear burners on the stovetop, keeping pot handles facing inward, using short appliance cords, and being extra careful with hot liquids.

February 6-12 is National Burn Awareness Week.

You can follow Noelle’s story and see more safety tips by visiting her Facebook page.