Child’s hair engulfed in flames in horrific candle accident at Halloween

A Scottish youngster left scarred by a terrifying Halloween accident in childhood was left engulfed in flames after she blew out a scented candle.

Four-year-old Karla Peacock bent over to blow out a Halloween candle, but her head caught fire and she suffered second and third-degree burns to her scalp.

The Glasgow girl then spent eight weeks in hospital recovering from the traumatic incident, which she can't remember aside from yelling "fire, fire" as her mum screamed.

Now 16, Karla is now fighting to replace wax tealights with safer battery-powered alternatives alongside the Scottish Fire and Rescue Service.

Karla told the Daily Record: "All I can remember was shouting 'fire, fire,' and my mum screaming and then me being in an ambulance.

"I was in hospital for a long time and I've had multiple operations since.

"My injury has had an impact not just on my appearance, but also how I feel about myself.

With the skin grafts, my scars are only visible now if I point them out but they are always visible to me.

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"Due to my surgeries I've been left with nerve damage and spinal pain and I also get panicked when I smell smoke and hear alarms or sirens.

"Children are curious and don't see the dangers others are more aware of. I want to share my story to stop another child from having to experience what I have."

Young people's skin is extra vulnerable to burns and scolds, with affected areas unable to develop as the rest of the body grows.

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Scottish Burned Children's Club chair Claire Gardiner said the mental toll is often as powerful as the physical one.

Ms Gardiner explained: "This not only causes recurrent physical pain for the child but also the emotional and mental impact that it can have, not only for the injured child but on the family as a whole."

She said she is supporting Karla's campaign.

Claire added: "Karla and her family have shown immense courage to share their story about the dangers of being around naked flames."

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