SPRINGFIELD, Ill. – After a DuPage County toddler’s death from complications arising from hot water scald burns, state Rep. Deb Conroy, D-Villa Park, passed legislation out of the House to mandate additional safety features on water heaters.
“For the past year, I have been working with a Naperville family who tragically lost their little girl in a hot water scalding accident that never should have happened,” said Conroy. “I am in awe of this family’s commitment to passing a law to ensure that no family has to go through the trauma and heartbreak that they have suffered. A simple safety valve on bathroom faucets limits the water temperature and ensures that the water coming out of the faucet isn’t so dangerously hot as to cause second or third degree burns that can become deadly. This safety tool should be a standard component of every single water heater in Illinois.”
House Bill 3427, known as “Mikayla’s Law,” requires safety valves to be placed on residential water heaters to prevent water coming from a bathtub faucet or shower faucet in excess of 120 degrees Fahrenheit. In 2010, 18 month old Mikayla King died as a result of burn injuries after three seconds of accidental exposure to scalding hot water. Mikayla’s family successfully sued the American Water Heater Company for creating a dangerous condition as a result of not including an anti-scalding device. Mikayla’s family has since advocated for the required use of anti-scalding safety valves in water heaters to prevent future injuries and accidents.
“I think it’s such a commonsense solution and it’s going to change peoples’ lives in ways they aren’t even going to know about,” said Mikayla’s mother, Jen King of Naperville. “This is the kind of change I hope to see more of. Reaching across the aisle and putting children and families first.”