While she suffered from second and third-degree burns, she also lost most of her things. But her most valuable possessions, her daughters, are safe.
Trigger Warning: Graphic Image
As soon as the pandemic engulfed the entire world, people went crazy buying hand sanitizers. So much so that supermarkets and pharmacies soon ran out of stock of sanitizers.
What started out of fear of getting infected by the novel coronavirus has now become our day-to-day ordeal. But sometimes, even the protectors can be life-threatening, even as small a thing as hand sanitizers.
A single mother, Katie Wise, suffered her worst nightmare when in a freak accident, her entire body caught on fire, leaving her with severe burns. But by some miracle, she was saved, reported CBS News. “This is a pain that I can’t even explain it. It’s literally your whole body, like your whole being, your nerves, muscles, it’s everything. Absolutely everything. Even now it’s like I wake up kind of reliving it.” said Katie.
The accident took place on August 31; a normal Sunday night turned into the day she would never want to remember. Katie was enjoying her nightly routine of lighting sage and watching a movie with her three daughters when it happened. Explaining the incident, she said, “We had gotten out of the shower and I was getting the sage ready and stuff, and when we got out of the shower we had put on our usual hand sanitizer.”
Katie said that her 14-year-old daughter suffers from many health problems, so in order to protect her from any kind of COVID-19 risks, applying hand sanitizer and using clean products is usual for them. After applying the sanitizer that she bought from a local store, she went to her office to light the sage. “Lit my whole hand on fire, and it obviously scared me, so I jumped back,” Katie said.
According to her, a bottle of rubbing alcohol was close by which fueled the fire. “When I pulled my hand back, I don’t know if there was some on the outside of the bottle or what, but when I pulled my hand back and the flame from my hand burning got bigger, it touched the bottle of alcohol so it was like the alcohol and the hand sanitizer mixed, and it just went off like a bomb," Katie said.
The scenario scared not just her but her daughters as well, who witnessed their mother getting caught on fire. Katie recalled, "The girls started freaking out, like ‘Mom you’re on fire, mom you’re on fire.”
Even though her body was burning, Katie's focus was on getting her family safely out of the burning room. “My arms are literally sizzling, my hair is still steaming smoking,” she said and continued, “After I knew that the girls were safe and after I knew the dogs, everybody, was outside away from the fire, I just went into complete shock.”
Katie suffered from second and third-degree burns, from her face to her feet. “Because of the flames and the burnt eyelashes and eyebrows, it actually scratched my corneas,” Katie said as she worried about losing her eyesight.
According to her doctors, they are hopeful that she would get her vision soon but her burns will take several months to heal. The mum while talking to KHOU-TV, said, "It can be something as small as lighting a candle. Because of the hand sanitizer, it just lit my whole ... everywhere I had hand sanitizer on my hand, it just lit my hand with fire.”
She continued, "And it obviously went all over my face. And, in like a matter of five seconds, my whole body was just consumed in flames." Katie was devastated that her kids had to see what happened to her. She explained, "It's something that you never want your kids to see. Like, you just being up in flames so I think that part kind of killed me just because it's something I never wanted them to have to go through."
To help her and her three daughters, Katie's friend Kathryn Bonesteel has set up a GoFundMe page as not only did Katie endure physical injuries, but they've lost most of their possessions as well. On top of that Katie's medical bills have only been mounting.
Requesting potential donors, Kathryn wrote on the page, "Kate needs child care for her three children while she recovers in the hospital. She needs a new home, new furniture, and clothes. She needs money to pay for the surgeries she's had and will need down the road."
She added, "Kate wants to spread awareness of what happened to her to help prevent this from happening to others."