Fire and medical experts offer these tips for preventing burn disasters:

* Don't leave food cooking unattended on the stove. Make sure all pot handles are facing the back of the stove and not hanging over the edge. When possible, use the back burners.

* Check the glass window of your oven to find out if it overheats while oven is in use.

* Keep curtains, paper towels, etc. well away from stove burners.

* Keep stove clean of grease.

* Don't leave containers of hot liquid withing reach of small-but-quick hands.

* Don't pour coffee or tea with a child in your arms; one quick move can lead to a spill and a scald.

* Make sure all household appliances work properly.

* Make sure no electrical cords are left dangling in the reach of children.

* Do not place a child in the bathtub until you have tested the water temperature yourself.

* NEVER leave small children unattended in the bathtub or at the sink; they can turn the hot water knob [or drown in water only a few inches deep].

* Try to set the water heater in your house or apartment so that the hot water temperature is no higher than 130 degrees.

What to do in a crisis:

* If there is a grease fire in the Kitchen, cover the pot with its lid, use a fire extinguisher if you have one [you should], or sprinkle baking soda on the flames. Do not use water, it just spreads the flames.

* If the fire gets out of control, get out of the house, close the door behind you and calmly call the fire department.

* If someone catches on fire, don't run! Push the victim to the floor and roll him until the flames are out, or roll him in a coat or blanket to smother the flames.

* Take the victim's clothes off immediately, wrap the person in a clean sheet or towel and get him to the hospital immediately. If a large portion of the body is burned, keep the person warm to prevent shock.

* For minor scalds and burns and chemical splashes, remove clothes right away and flush the skin with cold water, not ice.

* NEVER put butter, toothpaste, baking soda or ointments on the burn.

* If you have the slightest question about the severity of a burn, go to the nearest hospital.