New Year electric blanket safety exchange aims to prevent fires

Nottinghamshire residents with a disability or aged over 55 are being offered a chance to replace their old electric blanket free of charge for the New Year in a bid to prevent fires.

The County Council’s Trading Standards team is carrying out an electric underblanket exchange from Monday 7th January until Thursday 31st January for blankets over three years old.

Recent electric blanket tests carried out by the Council revealed that around six in 10 blankets tested were found to be faulty.

Faulty electric blankets have directly caused nine house fires in Nottinghamshire since April 2009, all of which could have been prevented.

People should replace electric blankets at least every 10 years so blankets blue or pink in colour which tend to be over a decade old should not be used.

Coun Mick Murphy, Chairman of Nottinghamshire County Council’s Community Safety Committee, said: “People who are eligible for a replacement blanket should act now in time for the coldest months of January and February as we have a limited numbers of replacement blankets.

“Electric blankets can be potentially deadly so we encourage people not to take any risks and buy a new one after ten years of use.”

The exchange does not apply to residents living in Nottingham city and eligible people should contact the Council on 01623 452 005 to make an appointment to replace their blanket.