Posted: Fri 24th Nov 2023

Safety charity warns against bad bargains this Black Friday

News and Info from Deeside, Flintshire, North Wales
This article is old - Published: Friday, Nov 24th, 2023

With Black Friday in full swing, The Royal Society for the Prevention of Accidents (RoSPA) is urging shoppers to prioritise safety when snapping up deals, particularly when buying toys, electricals, and fancy-dress costumes.

Prioritise Reputable Traders

RoSPA stresses the importance of purchasing from reputable traders. For online purchases, shoppers should look for sellers with a high street presence in the UK or verify their credibility through online reviews and a UK address listed on their website.

Check for Safety Marks on Toys and Costumes

In England, Scotland, and Wales, RoSPA advises only buying toys and costumes that carry UKCA or CE marks. In Northern Ireland, consumers should look for the UKNI symbol alongside the UKCA or CE mark. The Lion Mark, used by members of the British Toy and Hobby Association, also indicates a safe product.

All fancy-dress costumes, including wigs and masks, should comply with EN71 part 2 – the standard for toy flammability. Products sold by members of the British Retail Consortium (BRC) often undergo additional safety testing and are labelled accordingly.

Age Appropriateness and Hazardous Components

It’s crucial to choose age-appropriate toys. Age recommendations consider safety and the risk of younger siblings accessing potentially hazardous toys. Special attention should be paid to toys and gadgets containing button batteries, which pose significant ingestion risks. Despite regulations requiring lockable battery compartments, these can become unsecure or damaged.

Shoppers should also be wary of magnets in products. Like button batteries, if ingested, they can cause serious injuries.

Electrical Safety Checks

With many consumers waiting for Black Friday to purchase electrical items, RoSPA emphasizes the importance of buying products with the appropriate safety marks to prevent risks of fire and other hazards. This advice extends to e-scooters and e-bikes, which should be charged outside the home when possible.

A Word from RoSPA’s Expert

Philip LeShirley, Product Safety Advisor at RoSPA, highlighted the dual nature of Black Friday and Cyber Monday sales. “They provide great opportunities for consumers to save money, especially when buying Christmas presents for loved ones,” he said. But he also warned that what appears to be a bargain could, in fact, be an unsafe product or unsuitable for the intended recipient. RoSPA’s advice aims to ensure that consumers make informed and safe choices during their festive shopping.

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