East Sussex Fire and Rescue Service is calling on shoppers to stay canny to fakes as Black Friday approaches.
This year, it will take place on Friday 29 November and traditionally sparks a shopping boom for retailers.
However some bargains may not be what they seem.
Lisa Priestman from the Service’s Community Safety team has this advice:
“When you’re buying electrical goods, make sure they come from a reputable retailer. Second hand goods may have suffered damage which you can’t easily see so get them checked out by an expert. And always think twice if you are getting what seems to be an unmissable big name bargain – it may well be a dangerous fake.”
It’s not just gadgets like mobiles and tablets which can cause problems. White goods such as washing machines and tumble dryers have been known to cause fires.
Nationally over half of all accidental house fires are caused by electricity. And nine out of ten electrical fires are caused by electrical products, according to Electrical Safety First.
In East Sussex and Brighton and Hove in 2018-19, we had 676 accidental fires which affected homes, other residential and non-domestic properties. 119 were caused by a fault in an equipment or appliance and a further 77 by a faulty fuel supply - electricity.
- Buy electrical products from reputable retailers, this way you can be assured you’re buying the real thing.
- Check prices and shop around! Check online shops and if possible, visit the high street. If a bargain looks too good to be true, it probably is.
- Beware glowing reviews, especially if the reviewers aren’t verified.
- Beware of words qualifying an item’s authenticity, if the seller claims the product is ‘genuine’, ‘real’ or ‘authentic’ double check the source. Most reputable retailers don’t need to sell their products like this.
- Look for the seller’s contact details, for online marketplaces. Look for a full address and not just a PO Box number. Not all websites with a .co.uk address are based in the UK.
- Read product guarantees, terms and conditions, and returns policies before you buy.
Find out more about electrical safety.
Home Safety Visits
Did you know that we offer free Home Safety Visits to everyone in East Sussex?
We can visit to help you make your home safer and in some cases fitting smoke alarms.
If you would like a Home Safety Visit, please call us on 0800 177 7069.