Bedfordshire Fire and Rescue Service are alerting people about the dangers of buying cheap electrical goods online in the run up to Christmas this year. The Fire Service wants people to be aware of the fire risks of using fake electrical goods and chargers.
According to Electrical Safety First the number of counterfeit and sub-standard electrical goods sold online has increased considerably in recent years with the most common fakes being for popular and sought-after items. The number of fake mobile phones seized has risen by more than 50% with other top electrical fakes including hair straighteners, e-cigarettes chargers and games.
Worryingly, research by Electrical Safety First has shown that:
24% of people have knowingly bought a counterfeit product
21% would consider buying one in order to save money
16% do not think counterfeit products could put them at risk.
However, these fake goods often contain faulty parts that can cause products to overheat and catch fire. With products left charging overnight or on beds, and sometimes under pillows, a small spark can cause a major fire within minutes.
Bedfordshire Fire and Rescue Service advice is to stick to reputable retailers both on the High Street and online and have a look at Electrical Safety First's online Safe Shopper's Guide for advice on shopping safely online.
You can download the Safe Shopper's Guide here