Get your electric blanket checked – for free!

A series of free events will be taking place throughout Cornwall over the next few weeks to help owners of electric blankets to sleep soundly in their beds.

From Torpoint to St Ives, the free electric blanket testing events aim to give owners peace of mind, with Council officers checking for signs of faults that could potentially lead to fire.

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Last year's safety checks found faults with a third of those tested - and with faulty electric blankets to blame for around 1,000 house fires a year in the UK, owners can't afford to be complacent, explained Councillor Sue James, Cornwall Council Cabinet Member for Environment and Public Protection.

"Officers from Trading Standards and Cornwall Fire and Rescue Service have joined forces to host these events which have proved very popular - and worthwhile - in the past," said Sue. "These free checks detect the faults that you won't be able to see, such as the breakdown of the insulation protecting the heating cables and faulty controllers with no overheating protection.

"Electric blankets should be tested every three years and the faults that were discovered with blankets in Cornwall last year were the same faults that have been attributed to house fires around the country."

Over the last three years there have been two house fires in Cornwall that were the result of faulty electric blankets.

"Two incidents in three years may seem a small number, however if fire happens to you, it can be devastating," said Sue. "Nationally, each year around 20 people die and 250 are injured as a result of fires caused by faulty electric blankets. If you have an electric blanket, bring it along to one of our safety checks and give yourself peace of mind."

At the events we can also test your small home appliances for the small charge of £1 per item such as portable electric fires, plug in radiators, fan heaters, toasters and kettles.

Events are taking place at:

Tuesday 19 September

  • 9am – 12 noon Torpoint - Community Fire Station, Antony Road, PL11 2JY
  • 1pm - 4pm Looe – Community Fire Station, Church Street, West Looe, PL13 2EX

Tuesday 26 September

  • 9am – 12 noon Camelford  Library, Town Hall, Market Place, PL32 9PD
  • 1pm – 4pm Bodmin - Chy Trevail, Beacon Technology Park, PL31 2FR

Tuesday 3 October      

  • 9am – 12 noon  Penryn - Town Hall, Higher Market Street, TR10 8HU
  • 1pm – 4pm Helston Community Fire Station, Redruth Road, TR13 8NR

Tuesday 10 October   

  • 9am – 12 noon St Ives Community Fire Station, Higher Stennack, TR26 1BH
  • 1pm – 4pm Redruth Community Centre, Foundry Row, Chapel St, TR15 1AN

Tuesday 17 October   

  • 9am – 12 noon St Austell Community Fire Station, Carlyon Road, PL25 4LD
  • 1pm - 4pm St Mawes Community Fire Station, Polvarth Road TR2 5AY

The checks take around ten minutes and the safety events are open to all - you can either book a space or turn up on the day. If you can't make it to one of the venues, but have a minimum of five blankets for testing (whether these are all yours, or friends and neighbours), we will collect and return them to and from one address - this must be on the same day as the event closest to your town or village.To arrange collection call 01208 893133.

If your blanket or small appliance fails on the day and needs replacing we are offering 10% money off vouchers and entry in to a prize draw to win a £20 gift voucher, courtesy of HBH Woolacotts.

Read more about electrical fire safety