‘Horrific’: Ohio teen catches fire after using nail polish remover near a candle

DAYTON, Ohio (WJW) — A 14-year-old girl was in her bedroom removing nail polish last month when an explosion broke out.

Turns out the fumes from the liquid remover got too close to a nearby burning candle, causing the Ohio teen named Kennedy to be bathed in flames. Her screams caused her siblings to come running. They helped get her out of the room and called 911.

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“It was a horrific scene of her being covered in bubbles and welts and her skin being melted away,” Kennedy’s mother, Brandi, recently told People magazine.

The scary incident, which took place Jan. 5, left Kennedy covered in burns over 13% of her body, including on her arm, hands, stomach and thighs, according to Shriners Children’s Ohio in Dayton where Kennedy’s family sought treatment.

  • Dr. Sara Higginson, Chief of Staff at Shriners Children’s Ohio with Kennedy. Photo courtesy Shriners Children’s Ohio
    Dr. Sara Higginson, Chief of Staff at Shriners Children’s Ohio with Kennedy. Photo courtesy Shriners Children’s Ohio
  • Photo courtesy Shriners Children’s Ohio
    Photo courtesy Shriners Children’s Ohio
  • Photo courtesy Shriners Children’s Ohio
    Photo courtesy Shriners Children’s Ohio
  • Photo courtesy Shriners Children’s Ohio
    Photo courtesy Shriners Children’s Ohio
  • Photo courtesy Shriners Children’s Ohio
    Photo courtesy Shriners Children’s Ohio

Her third degree burns were treated with a skin graft surgery and Kennedy is continuing physical and occupational therapy at the hospital. Her family is reportedly unable to return to their home due to the fire.

Kennedy explained to Shriners that doing her nails before school games — she’s a cheerleader and plays the saxophone — is something she’s done many times before, never thinking about the flammability of the beauty supplies used.

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She told Shriners “she hopes her story will serve as a reminder and a warning to other families about just how quickly vapors or fumes can spark a fire and cause serious injury.”

Kennedy’s doctors say she is healing well. Feb. 4 – 10 is National Burn Awareness Week.

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