Hidden dangers: Phone chargers

October 7, 2019

Did you know your home could contain hidden dangers? The Competition and Consumer Protection Commission (CCPC) is responsible for making sure that a wide range of products sold in Ireland meet specific safety regulations.  Last year we stopped over 33,000 unsafe products from entering the Irish market, and only last month we destroyed 3,440 unsafe phone chargers.

Unsafe chargers and other electrical appliances are the cause of almost one in five fatal fires in Ireland, according to the National Standards Authority of Ireland (NSAI), so it is vital to ensure the devices you use are safe.

Here are our top tips on using chargers safely in your home.

  1. Don’t buy a cheap, unbranded charger and make sure it’s compatible your device
    Beware of chargers that are being sold much cheaper than others, or unbranded chargers. If you’re buying a charger from a brand you don’t recognise, check that it doesn’t feel too light, that it has a standard three pin plug and that it has a CE mark.  Also make sure that any chargers you buy are compatible with the device you have.
  2. Don’t leave devices charging overnight
    Never leave devices charging overnight and always unplug the charger when your device is fully charged. You shouldn’t leave anything charging unattended as devices that are left plugged in can be a serious fire hazard.
  3. Never charge a device on a flammable surface
    It is not unusual for a device to become warm when charging, however this can become a serious fire hazard if you leave your device charging on a flammable surface. Always make sure you charge on a hard surface and never cover a device with a blanket or charge it under a pillow.
  4. Don’t overload sockets
    It can be tempting to plug all your devices into one extension lead, however this can also cause a serious fire hazard. Never ‘daisy chain’ extensions leads together and keep the number of devices plugged into a single socket to a minimum. Larger appliances such as heaters, should always be plugged directly into a wall and should not share a socket with any other devices.

If you come across a toy or product that seems unsafe or looks like it has a fake CE mark, don’t buy it and contact us.

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