North East Lincolnshire Council

Don’t let your Halloween fun go up in flames

The spookiest time of year is almost upon us as people begin their mission to find the best Halloween costume.

But you must remember to stay safe and ensure you are buying good quality toys, costumes and make-up.

Trading Standards officers at North East Lincolnshire Council are warning shoppers to be careful.

Neil Clark, regulatory services strategic lead at the council, said:  “We would encourage parents to be vigilant and aware of the potential risks linked with fancy dress costumes and naked flames.

“Keep children away from naked flames such as candles and bonfires, especially if they are wearing flammable items like fake beards, wigs and costumes.

“Make sure you check labelling for warnings, instructions and age suitability before purchasing a product.

“Don’t be tempted to buy cheap Halloween accessories particularly over the internet without sight of the CE Mark.”

Councillor David Bolton, portfolio holder for safer and stronger communities, said:  “We should all enjoy Halloween and dressing up but do it sensibly and safely.

“Parents and carers need to be particularly cautious when buying outfits for younger children.

“It’s very important that people check their costumes for the CE mark to ensure that they are of good quality.”

In October 2014, Strictly Come Dancing presenter Claudia Winkleman’s daughter suffered serious burns after her witch costume went up in flames after brushing past a candle.

Some basic health and safety tips worth remembering:

  • Make sure the costume fits properly to avoid trips and falls
  • Always check costumes for the CE mark, instructions, age suitability and safety information
  • Keep flames away from the child and costume, or use LED lights
  • Ensure any masks or hoods don’t stop the child from seeing or breathing

Some road safety tips:

  • For greater visibility during dusk and darkness, decorate or trim costumes where appropriate with reflective tape that will glow in the beam of a car’s headlights
  • Where appropriate, children should carry electric torches to be easily seen

If you’ve had problems with faulty or dangerous goods, or want advice on consumer protection issues, contact Trading Standards through the Citizens Advice Consumer Service on 0345 404 0506 or online at www.adviceguide.org.uk.

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