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Electric blanket testing success 15 December 2009

RECENT fire safety checks on electric blankets resulted in 98 potentially dangerous blankets being removed from Island homes.

The Isle of Man Fire and Rescue Service provided free testing of blankets in Ramsey Town Hall, Castletown Civic Centre, and in Douglas at the TT Grandstand Press Office last month.

Failed electric blankets withe fire safety teamFire safety officer, Station Officer Carl Kinvig, said:

‘It is pleasing to see that this year the number of failures has fallen from 49% to 45%. The total number of blankets tested also reduced from 321 in 2008 to 219 this year. When looking at these figures it is important to remember that a lot of the people who had their blankets tested last year will look to get them retested in 2011.
‘In years gone by a lot of the blankets that were turning up for testing were extremely old, some dating back to the late 1960’s and early 1970’s. That trend seems to have almost stopped, which shows us that a lot of the more dangerous blankets have already been removed from circulation by the annual testing.’

This year the IoM Fire and Rescue Service shared the venues with the Manx Accident Prevention Forum, with a Gas Safe Engineer on hand to answer queries about carbon monoxide poisoning to mark Carbon Monoxide Awareness Week (November 16-19).

Station Officer Kinvig added:

‘Using the opportunity to raise awareness of carbon monoxide poisoning with our colleagues in the accident prevention group has also proven very successful, with members of the public asking for information and advice.’

Public Health Directorate Senior Health Promotion Officer Dawn Henley added:

‘We are delighted to be working with the Fire and Rescue Service to raise awareness of this important issue. To minimise the risk of carbon monoxide poisoning, I would encourage everyone to have their heating appliances regularly checked and maintained by an appropriately registered engineer, and an audible carbon monoxide alarm fitted in their home’.

Anyone requiring fire safety advice can contact the Fire Service community safety risk reduction team tel: 647303 or go to the website

For more information about reducing risks of carbon monoxide poisoning, contact the Public Health Directorate on 642144 or go to their website

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