Safety message issued on electric blankets

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PEOPLE are being given safety advice on electric blankets after a fire in Portsmouth was caused by one.

A 77-year-old woman was taken to Queen Alexandra Hospital, Cosham, for smoke inhalation, after her electric blanket caught fire in her home in Chaucer Avenue, Paulsgrove.

The following advice has been given:

n Buy new from reputable traders.

n Look for safety marks such as British Standards number BSEN 60976.

n Check the blanket has overheating protection.

n Always follow instructions carefully.

n Never use the blanket if it is creased or wet. If damp, do not turn it on to dry it out.

n When storing the blanket keep it flat.

n Never use the blanket if the fabric is worn or frayed, or if the tie tapes become loose or are lost.

n Have your blanket tested at least every three years.

For more information visit electricblankets.