Skip to main content

Deadly heaters detained by Suffolk Trading Standards

Over 300 electrical heaters have been detained at the Port of Felixstowe following the Imports Surveillance team discovering the products pose a serious risk of electrocution.
Published: 07 Mar 2023
An electric fan heater, remote and instructions manual.
One of the dangerous heaters detained.

Officers raised concerns about the heaters after finding that the grills used on them didn’t require tools to open, meaning live and hazardous parts could be accessed by hand.

The supply voltage requirements stated on the heaters were also incompatible with the UK power network, posing a danger of explosion or electric shock.

These unsafe heaters were due to be sold via Amazon but, thanks to the intervention of our Imports Surveillance team, the listing has now been removed, saving shoppers from unwittingly putting themselves at risk.
Graham Crisp, Head of Suffolk Trading Standards

Graham added: “We know that the cost of living is concerning for most, and many people may be more tempted than ever before to turn to products that seem to offer a good deal. Unfortunately, bargain purchases can leave you paying the ultimate price, with these increasing the risk of fire, serious injury or even death.

“Everyone can keep themselves safe by only shopping at reputable retailers and checking that anything they’ve bought meets safety standards. All electrical equipment should have a CE and/or UKCA mark.”

Councillor Andrew Reid, Cabinet Member for Public Health and Public Protection, commented: “I am incredibly grateful to Suffolk Trading Standards for their continued work to protect consumers by intercepting harmful products at the port before these can enter the UK’s marketplace.

“Even legitimate heaters can pose a fire risk if not used sensibly, so I would urge all Suffolk residents to follow safety precautions when heating their homes during the colder temperatures forecast across the county over the next few days.

“Heaters shouldn’t be used for drying clothes and must always be kept away from curtains and furniture. In addition, heaters should never be plugged into an extension lead, which could easily overheat and go up in flames, potentially endangering both people and property.”

The popularity of electric heaters has increased significantly during rising energy costs, with a recent survey carried out by Electrical Safety First finding that 22% of respondents had purchased a heater during the past year, often from an online marketplace.

Anyone who believes they may have purchased a dangerous heater should stop using it immediately and contact the Citizens Advice Consumer Service on 0808 223 1133.