The annual electric blanket campaign will be kicking off in Stoke-on-Trent next month. Staffordshire Fire and Rescue Service and Stoke-on-Trent City Council will again be testing electric blankets free of charge at venues across the City.
"Nationally hundreds of fires are caused every year by electric blankets, so ensuring yours is safe is really important."
Fire Safety Manager, Kelvin Knapper
Out of the 450 electric blankets tested last year, 180 were found to be unsafe!
Any electric blankets that fail the testing will not be handed back, but those aged over 60 and living in Stoke-on-Trent will be offered a brand new single or double under blanket as a replacement.
Fire Safety Manager, Kelvin Knapper said: "Nationally hundreds of fires are caused every year by electric blankets, so ensuring yours is safe is really important. We find that a lot of people fold up their electric blankets when they’re not in use, however this damages the internal wiring, making them dangerous.
"We will be doing the testing in September, as people generally start pulling out their blankets towards the end of the month once the temperatures start to drop and the nights start drawing in."
Councillor Terry Follows, Stoke-on-Trent City Council cabinet member for environment, waste management and neighbourhood services, said: "Last year, 450 electric blankets were tested at the drop-in sessions, with 40 per cent of those failing the test. Any of the blankets that failed could potentially have caused a house fire.
"Council consumer protection officers are marking the start of the week of blanket testing by staging a ‘keeping well, keeping safe’ information event at Hanley Town Hall on the first testing date. This will be attended by a variety of agencies involved with the care and safety of our elderly residents. They will be on hand for advice and information for visitors while they wait to have their blanket tested."
Testing will take place at the following venues:
Hanley Town Hall – September 22nd
Kings Hall, Stoke-on-Trent – September 23rd (am)
Burslem Fire Station – September 23rd (pm)
Longton Market – September 24th