Trading Standards warn of potentially dangerous giant cigarette lighters

The Highland Council’s Trading Standards are warning the public of the potential dangers of some extra large cigarette lighters after finding some on sale in the Highlands which have failed safety tests.

Officers were alerted by colleagues in other parts of the country to the potential safety risks of extra large cigarette lighters after tests found some failed the relevant safety standards.  The lighters are similar in style to normal size plastic disposable lighters but are much larger, about 4-5 times larger, approximately the size of an adult hand.  The ones brought to the attention of Trading Standards’ officers are 16cm long and 4cm wide.  Trading Standards Officers in Highland have found identical lighters on sale in the area.

Gordon Robb, Head of Trading Standards, said: “The particular lighters that failed the safety standards have been removed from sale by our officers.  Our officers are currently investigating other types of extra large lighters being offered for sale in the Highlands to ensure they too comply with the relevant standards.  In these circumstances the actions of those local and national retailers that have voluntarily withdrawn suspect lighters from sale is commendable.

“The lighters in question failed because they exhibited flaring during tests.  This means the flame is not normal and is unpredictable, it can cause injury.  Our concern is that, given this time of year, as well as being held close to the face, these types of lighters may also be used to light barbecues and the risks to personal safety are obvious.”

“While there have been no cases of reported incidents connected with this product in the Highlands, there have been elsewhere in the country and we are concerned that members of the public who have bought these may not be aware of the potential dangers. There are many varieties of this type of product available and we ask that both consumers and retailers follow our advice.”

Concerned members of the public are advised to contact their retailer for assurance that the product is safe, retailers with any concerns should contact their suppliers immediately for certified evidence that the product meets the required safety standard and anyone with greater concerns can contact Highland Council Trading Standards Service on 0845 600 4222 for further advice.

Notes to editors

The General Product Safety Regulations require products to meet strict European safety standards.  The relevant standards for lighters are BS EN ISO 9994: 2006 and EN 13869 for child-resistance.  Manufacturers and importers are required to have technical documentation to show their products have been tested to meet the safety rules.

The lighters that failed the standard are called “Big Lighters” and are approximately 16cm long and 4cm wide.  They come in various colours. The particular make carry a label with reference codes WD393 and MGL and have the barcode number 5034913074976

1 Jul 2011