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4 Tips to Avoid Injury Around Pizza

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Pizza is one of the most popular foods around the globe, but a recently released study found that a staggering number of Americans injure themselves while indulging in the cheesy triangle. 

The study by Babylon Health, a medical services provider, analyzed data from the National Electronic Injury Surveillance System, run by the Consumer Product Safety Commission. The study revealed that each year about 3,800 people go to the emergency room for pizza-related incidents. 

The causes range from slicing your finger while cutting a pizza to burning your mouth eating a hot slice.

Adam Hover, who works in at Coppola’s pizzeria in Upstate New York, fell while carrying a large tray of tomato sauce. 

“That was a big mess, I’m still to this day finding remnants of sauce,” he told Inside Edition, adding that it is “definitely is a risky business to be in." 

Inside Edition got some pizza safety tips from Angelo Bulone, owner of Imperial Pizzeria in Lindenhurst, New York.

1. Approach with caution. 

Bulone says that anyone who finds themselves around a pizza oven, especially his employees, need to remember to be careful around it.

He keeps his oven at 550 degrees and says many of the injuries he sees occur from getting burned on the hot stove. 

“Always be careful, always cautious,” he said. He says to use a pizza peel to pull the pie out of the oven and not touch the inside. 

2. Be patient with your pizza.  

Bulone says another mistake people make that can cause injury is not letting the pizza cool down before cutting it. 
 
“It is like molten lava coming out of a volcano. ... It will burn,” he said.  

“A lot of people make a lot of mistakes, they decide to cut the pie while it's hot. ... That's a big no-no and that's no good because what happens is the cheese and the sauce are extremely, extremely hot. If that cheese or sauce gets on your hand, you will have second-degree burns,” he said. 

This also applies to eating it.

“A lot of mistakes that people do make is that they will grab the pizza right away and they will shove it into their mouth and take a big bite and that is how they will burn the roof of their mouth,” Bulone explained. 

He says the best way to enjoy a slice is to make sure it is “cool to the touch” because the cheese and sauce will still be hot. Then, take a small bite. Bulone says taking a big bite will cause you to burn the roof of your mouth.

3. Use the right tools.  

"Always use a pizza cutter," he said. "Not a knife, not a fork, just a regular pizza cutter."

Also, when cutting the pie, have it on a flat surface, and go straight across while applying a lot of pressure with the sharp pizza cutter. 

4. Don't try any fancy moves.  

When carrying a pizza box out of a restaurant, hold it with two hands. 

Place one hand on each side of the box, level with your chest. Never hold it from the bottom with one hand, you can cause the pizza to top and spill hot sauce. 

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