The National Standards Authority of Ireland (NSAI) is warning consumers to be extremely careful when buying and using electrical products.
It comes after a fire broke out in an apartment in Islandbridge, Dublin last night (Wednesday). A charger left on a bed overheated and burst into flames, causing extensive damage.
“Everyone knows the rules of basic fire safety and indeed many look out for safety standards, such as the CE Mark, when buying electrical products. However, although the device may be manufactured to the correct safety standards, it can still become very dangerous, very quickly, if not used in the appropriate environment,” warned Pat Bracken, NSAI’s director of corporate services.
“Electrical products like hair straighteners, hairdryers, laptops and phone chargers can be incredibly dangerous if left on beds or sofas. Although duvets and quilts often undergo flammability tests, accidents like this can still occur,” he added.
Between 2005 and 2014, there have been 326 fatal fires in Ireland, claiming the lives of 366 people. In the 158 instances where the cause of the fire was known, electrical appliances were suspected in 28 fatal fires (18% of cases), while a further 3% of fatal fires were attributed to electric blankets. In 2011 alone, 241 fires in Ireland were caused by electrical equipment.