Skip to content
General News, Government NSW

Winter home safety: Protect your family with these essential tips

NSW Fair Trading 2 mins read

As the weather cools down, consumers across NSW are being reminded to follow simple, no-cost measures to protect themselves from harms caused by commonly used heating products.

Families should be vigilant with “winter warmers” such as electric blankets, heaters, hot water bottles, wheat/heat packs and fireplaces, and aware of safety risks associated these items.

Tips for keeping safe this winter:

  • Smoke alarms: Replace your smoke alarm if it's been more than 10 years since installation. Test it regularly and change batteries every year.
  • Electric blankets: Check your electric blanket for frayed cords and worn-out wires. Always turn it off before going to sleep and avoid placing any heavy objects on top of it.
  • Hot water bottles: Use hot tap water, not boiling water, to fill up your hot water bottle. Always cover it with a fitted cover or wrap, and never place it directly on your skin. Familiarise yourself with the 'daisy wheel' date, which indicates when the bottle was made.
  • Candles: Never leave candles unattended and keep them away from combustible materials. Keep lighters and matches out of reach of children.
  • Fireplaces: Ensure that your chimney is clean and well-ventilated before lighting a fire. Use a mesh screen to prevent sparks and wood from falling out.
  • Heaters: Keep your heater on a flat, level surface and away from any combustible materials. Don't bring outdoor heaters inside your home.
  • Wheat/heat packs: Always allow the pack to cool before reheating it. Follow the heating instructions and dispose of it if you smell burning.
  • Decorative alcohol-fuelled devices: Don't leave them unsupervised and keep them away from combustible materials. Refill only after the flame is completely extinguished and the device is cool.
  • Children's nightwear: Avoid loose-fitting sleepwear and keep children away from open flames and heaters.
  • Mould: Clean up any mould as soon as you notice it and find and fix the source of moisture.

NSW Fair Trading’s Consumer Protection Unit conduct annual inspections on a range of products to ensure compliance with mandatory safety standards.

During routine inspections at GY Kids Pty Ltd in Mt Druitt and Bankstown stores in April 2021, investigators found 121 sets and 40 sets respectively of children's nightwear which did not affix the required fire hazard warning labels.

GY Kids Pty Ltd was charged and pleaded guilty to two counts of offer goods that do not comply with safety standards. GY Kids Pty Ltd was convicted and fined a total of $1,000 at Parramatta Local Court on 18 February 2022.

NSW Fair Trading received 15 complaints and 13 enquiries about ‘winter warmer’ products in 2022.

Check if a product you own has been recalled by visiting the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission’s Product Safety website.

 

Quotes attributable to NSW Fair Trading Commissioner Natasha Mann:

“Simple precautions such as checking for recalls on all products, following safety guidelines, and being vigilant about safety can go a long way in protecting your family and home.

“Smoke alarms are our first line of defence against fires – so it’s vital their batteries are replaced annually, they are regularly tested, and alarms more than 10 years old are replaced.

“Children are particularly vulnerable to burns and accidents related to heating products and it is crucial to keep them away from open flames, heaters, and loose-fitting sleepwear.

“By being proactive and making safety a top priority we can all enjoy a warm and cosy winter season free of harm this year.”


Contact details:

media@customerservice.nsw.gov.au

0438 108 797

Media

More from this category

  • Environment, General News
  • 01/12/2023
  • 17:20
NSW Environment Protection Authority

Extra Air Quality Monitoring for Lake Macquarie provides near Real Time Data

The NSW Environment Protection Authority (EPA) is installing up to 20 new air quality monitors in west Lake Macquarie to assist the community to respond to local air quality issues including dust, as a warm dry summer approaches. EPA Director Operations David Gathercole said the monitors will complement the existing air quality monitoring network operated by the government and licensees to provide a better picture of outdoor air quality. This information can help both the EPA and the community identify areas of concern and may help inform future initiatives in the area. “We know the communities in west Lake Macquarie…

  • Environment, General News
  • 01/12/2023
  • 15:33
Return and Earn

Return and Earn celebrates six years of success

NSW’s wildly popular recycling scheme, Return and Earn, is today celebrating six years of success in which it has seen 8 out of 10…

  • Contains:
  • Disability, General News
  • 01/12/2023
  • 15:20
La Trobe University

International Day of Persons with a Disability – Sunday, December 3

On Sunday December 3, the WHO marks International Day of Persons with a Disability. This year’s theme is achieving sustainable development goals for health and well-being for, with, and by persons with disabilities. In Australia, 4.4 million people identify as having a disability. A La Trobe University expert is available to discuss the health inequities that impact persons with a disability in Australia. Dr Teresa Iacono Professor of Rural & Regional Allied Health Contact: T.Iacono@latrobe.edu.au About Professor Teresa Iacono Teresa's clinical and academic interests are in severe communication impairment in people with developmental disabilities, as well as health and mental…

Media Outreach made fast, easy, simple.

Feature your press release on Medianet's News Hub every time your distribute with Medianet. Pay per release or save with a subscription.