Is your life worth $30?

Published: 9 Jun 2022 2:31pm

New single electric blankets and heaters can be purchased for as little as $30, so is using a damaged one worth risking your life?

Each year many electric shocks and fires that could be easily avoided are caused by faulty electrical heating equipment.

Ergon’s Safety Manager Mick Bobin said for most of the year heating appliances are stored out of sight in sheds, ceiling spaces and cupboards where they can suffer damage that poses a serious safety risk.

“Before plugging in heaters or electric blankets this winter it’s crucial you check for warning signs, such as frayed cords, exposed wires, damaged plugs and any other obvious dangers.

“If the appliance does have signs of damage, you’re best either having it repaired by a qualified technician or simply throwing it away because it’s not worth risking the life of a loved one by using something that can cost as little as $30 to replace.”

Mr Bobin said house fires caused by electrical heating equipment are also a risk if you don't take precautions.

“Heaters and electric blankets should always be switched off before you leave the room or go to sleep, and children should never be left unsupervised with these appliances running.

“Never place heaters near combustible items such as curtains, furniture or clothes as they may catch fire, and never use heaters in wet areas such as bathrooms or where they can be knocked over by people or pets.

“Once winter is over, heaters and electric blankets should be stored safely away in a dry area and somewhere they won't be damaged by sharp objects or rodents.”

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