As temperatures fall and the nights draw in its more than likely that you are going to get the electric blanket out of the airing cupboard.
how old is it? is it safe, have you done any basic safety checks? are there frayed cables?
There has been a large increase in the numbers of electrical appliances that can now be found in the home, including electric blankets. Whilst many of these products are perfectly safe when used correctly, there is still an increased risk of fires in the home due to faulty or damaged electrical products or where electrical sockets are overloaded.
fires are occurring as a result of a faulty or misused electrical appliance or overloading of sockets. National statistics indicate that in 2012-13, 43 people died in accidental electrical dwelling fires in England and a further 3,463 were injured.
It is important that we continually promote electrical fire safety so that we can reduce the number of incidents and injuries. Worn or damaged electric blankets pose a serious fire safety risk. So it’s important to keep your blanket serviced and well maintained.
To prevent incidents involving electrical appliances:-
• Check toasters are clean and placed away from curtains and kitchen roll.
• Never overload sockets; keep to one plug per socket
• Keep electrical leads and appliances away from water and never use if damaged
• Don’t leave washing machines, tumble dryers and dishwashers on if nobody is at home
• Keep your eyes peeled for signs of dangerous or loose wiring such as such as scorch marks, hot plugs and sockets, fuses that blow or circuit breakers that trip for no obvious reason or flickering lights
• Store electric blankets flat, rolled up or loosely folded to prevent damaging the internal wiring
• Unplug electric blankets before you get into bed
• Take special care with portable heaters; secure them so they can’t fall over and keep them a safe distance from combustible materials such as curtains and furniture. Never use portable heaters for drying clothes.
• Have your central heating system serviced by a qualified engineer.
• Have a working smoke alarm on each level of your home to provide early warning in the event of a fire.