A SEVEN-YEAR-OLD boy suffered severe burns to both of his hands after mistakenly picking up a pile of burning hot barbecue coals on a busy beach, writes Iona Turner.

Callum Lawlor was skimming stones at Luss beach with his mum Carly and four-year-old brother Connor when he grabbed the boiling coals, thinking they were pebbles.

The pain was so “unbearable” four people had to hold him down while morphine was administered.

Now mum Carly is trying to raise awareness of the importance of proper barbecue disposal.

She told the Advertiser: “Callum just saw the pile of ‘stones’ under a tree on the beach and scooped them up, but then he screamed and dropped them. He had picked up hot coals from someone’s barbecue which had just been dumped on the ground.

“There was a hut nearby where a man was running water so we ran over and hosed Callum’s hands for half an hour.

“Then we wrapped his hands in cling-film and he held an ice pack while we drove to hospital.”

Callum, from Drumchapel, was taken to the Queen Elizabeth University Hospital in Glasgow where his hands were placed in cold water for a further two hours.

“The pain was unbearable when he took his hands out of the water,” Carly added, “so the nurses had to give him morphine in order to get him in to surgery, but his hands had to be removed from the water for this to happen.

“Four people ended up holding him down so he could be injected with the painkiller.”

Callum then underwent surgery to remove all of the charred skin from both of his hands, and will now be left with significant scarring from the incident.

Doctors were unable to confirm how long recovery will take but did say that he will need constant check-ups and therapy sessions as the skin begins to heal in case the scar tissue begins to prohibit the movement in his fingers.

Instead of taking part in his usual activities over the summer such as football and karate, the youngster will have to be fed, dressed and washed by his mum because his hands are so extensively bandaged in what the doctors called “boxing gloves”.

As a result of the traumatic experience, which happened on Thursday, June 28, Carly is trying to prevent any other people from getting hurt in the same way.

“It is a completely irresponsible thing to do when the coals can be put in water and cooled down quite easily,” she said.

“There was a baby running about on the beach that day with nothing on. Imagine if she had fallen face first onto them.”

Gordon Watson, chief executive of Loch Lomond and The Trossachs National Park, said: “We’re disappointed and saddened to hear that a child has been injured over the weekend because a barbecue wasn’t disposed of properly.

“Litter not only spoils the spectacular landscape and views of the area but can be dangerous to people and wildlife.

“It’s important that people take responsibility and do the right thing and properly cool and dispose of disposable barbecues carefully.

“We wish the young boy a speedy recovery and advise anyone who is planning to have a camp fire or barbecue in the national park to make sure they clean up afterwards and leave no trace.”