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Free electric blanket testing for elderly

27th October 2005

With an abnormally cold winter predicted this year, older people across the UK are being encouraged to reduce the risk of faulty electric blankets by having them tested.

To help with the task Age Concern has once again stepped in with E.ON, the company that runs Powergen, to offer free electric blanket testing to older people in areas across the country.

It is the seventh consecutive year the organisations have joined forces to help protect the elderly from fires that could be fatal or could leave them homeless for the remainder of the winter.

Old or damaged blankets cause more than 5,000 house fires every year and of the 4,000 blankets tested last year 67 per cent were found to be faulty.

If a faulty blanket is found, E.ON will repair or replace the blanket free of charge.

A total of 40 testing days will take place throughout the country at locations including, Bolton, Chesterfield, Coventry, Lancaster, Lincoln, Norwich, Nottingham, Oldham, Spalding and Wigan.

A statement from Age Concern England said: "The winter months can be very difficult for older people who sometimes struggle to keep warm. Each year we meet hundreds of people who don’t realise how dangerous it can be to use an old or damaged electric blanket.

"We want as many people as possible to take advantage of our scheme this year to ensure a warm and safe winter.”

Testing is by appointment only and can be booked by calling 0845 676 00 31.