Maria Caulfield MP calls for caution when buying electricals online this Christmas

Maria Caulfield MP is helping to raise awareness of fake electrical goods for sale online as more shoppers turn online for their Christmas shopping.

Concerns around Covid-19 have led to many of us to shop online this Christmas instead of visiting the High Street. Consumer safety charity Electrical Safety First has carried out some research for Electrical Fire Safety Week (23rd-29th November), which shows that millions more than ever before will turn to online marketplaces for what they see as ‘safer’ Christmas shopping.

But the Charity is warning shoppers that they could be swapping one safety risk for another. Multiple investigations by Electrical Safety First have found dangerous electrical products, which present a serious fire risk, can easily be bought from third party sellers via online marketplaces.

Now Maria Caulfield MP, as part of their support for Electrical Fire Safety Week, is helping the Charity raise awareness of this risk in the run up to the Christmas shopping period.

“Electrical Safety First’s research has shown that 63% of those in the South East are planning to use online marketplaces for their shopping this Christmas, with 49% saying they’ll be using them more than usual”, explains Maria Caulfield MP. “This is essentially because people believe these websites are a safer way of shopping than going to the High Street during the pandemic.”

“But this confidence is not supported by the Charity’s investigations, which have repeatedly found unsafe electricals for sale online, including on Amazon Marketplace, eBay and Electrical Safety First’s research indicates that 15% of shoppers in South East are planning to buy an electrical item as a gift this Christmas – yet it has previously found that in the UK three out of five fake electricals are purchased online1, with a third of buyers experiencing major problems with the item.”

“So I’m joining with Electrical Safety First to urge my constituents to reduce their chances of buying dangerous electricals by sticking to the stores or websites of known manufacturers and retailers and to beware of buying from third party sellers on these platforms.

We all love a bargain and Christmas is always expensive! But with almost half of all domestic fires in UK homes caused by electricity – and most arising from electrical products – this is a risk you don’t want to take.”