Hot water in Icelandic homes “a death trap” Skip to content

Hot water in Icelandic homes “a death trap”

Hot water piped in to Icelandic homes is a death trap, according to Jens Kjartansson, head of the Burns and Restorative Surgery unit at the National University Hospital in Reykjavík. The most serious burn wounds that the unit has to deal with are caused by hot water in private residences. This is reported by Morgunbladid.

The vast majority of Icelandic homes use geothermal water piped straight from the ground, which is usually around 70°C and sometimes as high as 80°C (158-176°F) when it comes out of the tap. According to Kjartansson, what characterizes burn wounds of this type is that they often extend to 20-30 percent of the body surface. Often it is children who are injured and they bear the scars for the remainder of their lives. He harshly criticizes companies like Reykjavík Energy for not making arrangements to reduce the temperature of the water down to 45°C, which is the norm in the other Nordic countries.

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