News Article

Christmas safety

Don't let your Christmas go up in smoke!

Warning to consumers: Online Shopping

In the run up to Christmas, online sales are at their highest! Shoppers are not just hitting cyberspace to take advantage of the excellent variety of unique gifts but to add to their already extensive collection of Christmas decorations, with the traditional festive indoor and outdoor lights of all shapes and sizes being the most popular. However, purchasing electrical lights online demands a little more attention to detail than just choosing a colour. Images of Christmas trees going up in flames within seconds have been publicised to consumers across various media, clearly demonstrating the dangers of unsafe Christmas lights.

People should be extra vigilant when buying electrical lighting from overseas! Although many products arrive with a suitable UK mains adapter plug, the voltage and fuses supplied may not confirm to European standards. Whilst shopping online for Christmas decorations, local electrician and NAPIT registered installer, Paul Lamb, contacted NAPIT after identifying two sets of Christmas lights that were not suitable for UK usage, he explained that "one set of small L.E.D lights had a flat two-pin plug supplied with a UK mains adapter plug however the original plug had a tiny 125v stamp making it incompatible for use in a U.K. 13A socket. Another set of lights were supplied with a 13A plug containing a 13A fuse however the fuse should have been no more than a 3A, resulting in both sets being a potential fire hazard."

NAPIT Technical Director, Frank Bertie commented: "I feel the public needs to be made aware of the possible dangers when purchasing electrical decorations, especially from unknown sources. Every year there are a significant number of fires over the Christmas period, most often linked to faulty lights or overloaded power circuits. NAPIT strongly recommend that unqualified people dealing with festive electrics such as Christmas decorations, visit their local Fire and Rescue services website for advice on keeping safe this festive season."

NAPIT is the National Association of Professional Inspectors and Testers and holds a register of certified electrical installers and experts operating across all fields of electrical work, including; domestic and industrial installations, periodic inspection reporting & equipment testing.

To find a NAPIT Registered Installer near you visit:

Article Published: 14 December 2017

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NAPIT is one of the leading Government approved and United Kingdom Accreditation Service (UKAS) accredited membership scheme operators in the building services and fabric sector. There are currently more than 16,000 NAPIT registered installers in the electrical, heating, plumbing, ventilation, microgeneration and building fabric trades across the UK domestic, commercial and industrial markets. Read more...

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